Employees Beware

Police said a brazen scam artist is tricking gas station and convenience store employees out of their jobs by dressing up as an employee.

According to witnesses, a woman wearing a red Texaco shirt and black pants approached an employee at a Texaco Food Mart shortly before midnight and announced she was there "to relieve the midnight shift person," said Terri Smith, the employee who was to be relieved.

When asked if the imposter looked like a c-store employee, Smith told WJXT TV in Jacksonville, "Yes, like maybe she could have just gotten off from another store."

Police and store management said that no new employee fits the woman's description, nor was one scheduled to work that shift. Police concluded that the woman is "a scam artist trying to trick workers into leaving the store to make off with its cash," the report said.

Events leading up to the incident started hours earlier, when around 4:30 p.m. an employee said that she received a call explaining that someone would be coming in to relieve the midnight shift operator. The workers suspected that something wasn't right, but the workers said that the locked up and waited just in case.

Smith said six hours later, the woman walked in pretending to be an employee, but Smith said that she didn't buy her story.

"She said, 'My name is Tiffany.' I told her I didn't see her name on the schedule, and she said, 'Well, my ride dropped me off. What can I do? Will you call me a ride?' I said, 'Yeah.' That's when I called my manager and she told me to push the alarm and lock the doors," Smith said.

Smith said that the woman left before police arrived. City officials said a woman has called a number of stores asking questions about work schedules and bank deposits. Police say that they are trying to figure out if there is a ring of scam artists working together.
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