Man scams car dealership with fake check

Crime Tracker

SMYRNA, Tenn. (WKRN) — Shawkat Hussein says more than $18,500 was stolen from off his car dealership’s parking lot.

“$18,500 is a lot of money,” Hussein said.

Hussein owns Grand Auto Sale and Repair in Smyrna.

On July 8, he says he sold a 2017 grey Dodge Charger to a man who said his name was “James Henry.”

After negotiating a price, he says the man claimed he was going to get a cashier’s check for $18,550 from Bank of America.

“Everything seemed legit,” said Aram Hussein who works at the dealership. “His ID matched up with his location that he had on his paperwork.”

But, days later he found out the check and the man’s Alabama driver’s license number were both fake.

“I’m upset,” Hussein said. “But, nothing I can do.”

The owner says all his phone calls to the man went straight to a Google Voice account.

“I left him a message, no response,” Hussein said.

Hussein says he’s been in business for 21 years and says something like this has never happened. He says it could take months to recover from such a big loss.

“Get this vehicle back for this family,” Hussein said. “This is a lot of money.”

Smyrna Police are investigating but haven’t made any arrests.

The owner is now offering a cash reward.

“A thousand dollars [to] anybody finds him or finds my vehicle,” Hussein said.

Hussein says he doesn’t want anyone else to get scammed by the suspect who describes as “charming,” showed no red flags, and even talked about his grandmother.

“From now on, I don’t trust anybody,” the owner said. “That’s it.”

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