Another Columbia church is the victim of a scam

Friday, May 28, 2010 | 3:53 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — The Columbia Police Department received a second report about a scam that affected a local church.

According to a previous Missourian story, the first scam report involved a man who called the United Church of Christ on May 14, claiming that he had fallen behind on his rent and had been evicted. The church wired money to the man after a second man, who identified himself as the first caller’s landlord, called and requested it.

Our Lady of Lourdes Church is the victim of the second scam report, the department said in a news release.

The church received a similar message on May 11 from a man stating he was behind on his rent and was a caretaker for an acquaintance who was ill, according to the news release.

He identified himself as Brent Gray and stated his landlord’s name was Darryl Titus, the news release said. These names were identical to the ones provided by the man from the first scam report.

Unlike the man’s statement that his landlord, “Darryl Titus,” was in Las Vegas, the phone number he provided for the landlord is a California phone number. The number that he called from is not a Boone County number, either, the release stated.

The Title and Deeds Office found no property owned by Darryl Titus in Boone County, the news release said.

The news release urged churches to be cautious and report any similar incidents.

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