Friday, December 05, 2008

Hate crime charges for man accused of money scam

From WTMJ Newsradio:
Burlington, Wisconsin - A man from Burlington, accused of scamming money from a mentally disabled woman, has been charged with committing hate crimes.

Police say James Gustafson called a mentally disabled woman and pretended to be her dead father.

The woman told police that someone claiming to be a psychic called her and said that her late father wanted to talk to her.

After believing she had talked with her father, the psychic told her if she wanted to talk to him again, she needed to give Gustafson money.

He has been charged with two counts of misdemeanor theft by false representation, both of which have the hate crime enhancer attached.

The Racine Journal Times says the man is accused of targeting her because of her disability.

See also Man accused of scamming mentally disabled woman