Man steals victim’s phone, scams money off her friends


SOUTH DAYTON, N.Y. (WIVB) – State Police say a man stole a woman’s cell phone and used it to assume her identity and scam her friends out of money.

Troopers say the victim, a South Dayton resident, reported on March 2 that 22-year-old Patrick Seekings of Ashville had stolen her smartphone. Authorities say after taking the phone, Seekings sent out text messages while pretending to be the victim, telling her friends the victim needed $200 immediately to cover a vehicle tow bill.

Seekings managed to convince a friend to send the money through an electronic transfer to a Western Union kiosk in a Rite Aid in the Town of Ellicott.

Officers caught up to Seekings on Monday and charged him with third degree identity theft and two counts of petit larceny.

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