Garage sale scammers using movie prop cash to pay for goods

‘You just don’t expect people to rip you off at a garage sale’

Garage sale season is here and it’s important to be aware of scammers.

Garage sale season is here, and it’s important to be aware of scammers.

A Royal Oak resident reached out to Help Me Hank about a problem that police say is happening all over.

“We were cashing out at the end of the weekend, and I noticed that some of the money felt kinda funny,” said Julie Bell describing the fake money given to her mother at their garage sale.

Bell tells Help Me Hank about a woman looking at designer clothing and paying for the clothes in “movie prop only” cash.

Click here for a link to a counterfeit money detector pen

The customer allegedly exchanged fake $5s and $20s for the garage sale goods and folded the money when handing it to Bell.

“Other people that could be doing garage sales can be really taken advantage of and during these times that people might be trying to get some extra cash for gas and groceries, it’s really despicable,” said Bell.

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About the Authors:

Hank Winchester is Local 4's Consumer Investigative Reporter and the head of WDIV's "Help Me Hank" Consumer Unit. He works to solve consumer complaints, reveal important recalls and track down thieves who have ripped off metro Detroiters.

Elizabeth Washington is a Digital Producer and has been with Local 4 News since April 2022.