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Fraudsters use family's home address on their website in costly puppy scam

People are showing up at the home looking to pick up a puppy that doesn't exist
Fraudsters use family's home address on their website in costly puppy scam
Posted at 5:00 AM, Feb 16, 2023

COLORADO SPRINGS — We’re learning more about the impact of puppy scams on people here in the Pikes Peak Region and how one family is being impacted every time someone falls for the scam.

People land on a website with pictures of dogs and put down hundreds of dollars in deposit money for a new puppy, but in this case when they show up at the posted business address it’s a family home, not a place where puppies are being sold.

“They would actually show me a website that was the business website with my address on there,” Colorado Springs homeowner Arlyn told News5.

Arlyn and her family live in a northeast Colorado Springs neighborhood and say since they moved here back in October of 2019 they’ve had a constant stream of people showing up at their door looking to pick up a new puppy they purchased online.

”I have to be the one to deliver the news which is why you see that laminated piece of paper with a case number. I encourage people to call the police department,” said Arlyn.

She says based on the number of people she’s seen come to her door the past few years, she knows there’s a serious problem with scams and fraud going on in our area.

”It’s constant. There’s no control over it. They are just scamming people left and right out here,” Arlyn said.

Working with the Colorado Springs Police Department, Alryn says she learned the people using her address on a puppy selling website are international fraudsters and every time someone comes to the door for a puppy her family has to deal with the impact.

I feel like there’s more than one victim. There’s definitely more than one because every time I have to tell somebody I’m sorry you’ve been scammed, this is my house we don’t sell puppies here. I don’t know that person who is selling puppies. They look at us wanting more answers to their questions and I can’t give it to them,” said Arlyn.

News5 asked Alryn how she things the fraudsters got her family’s address the first place.

”Your guess is as good as mine,” she said. “It’s super frustrating because we don’t see an end game here.”

Arlyn says CSPD has agreed to help keep an eye on any suspicious activity around her house, but ultimately the only way to end this is if people stop falling victim to this puppy scam.

”If we can stop one more person from coming to, not just my house but, anybody’s house and (they’re able to) realize they're being scammed I think we’ve done well,” said Arlyn.

While investigators haven’t committed to going after international fraudsters like this, Arlyn says reporting the situation through the Better Business Bureau’s Scam Tracker has helped other potential victims who did the research avoid showing up at her house and losing money.

Resources:

Here is the link to the BBB Scam Tracker for more information and to report a scam.

If you are considering buying a puppy online here is some previous reporting we’ve done and some resources to help you stay safe.

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