Note to all current and future con artists, take the time to do a few minutes of research on your potential victims.

A recent post on the Evansville Police Department Facebook page is not only a humorous anecdote, but a word of warning to residents about a scam being conducted through the mail.

According to the post, Chief Bolin received a priority package in the mail (at the police station!) recently that contained a check for $2,710. All he had to do was cash the check and complete two surveys as a "Secret Shopper" for whoever sent the package. The instructions stated Bolin was to shop at WalMart and purchase whatever he wanted as long as it was under $50. He could keep $150 as a fee for his services. The next step was to visit "the Money Gram" store and monitor their customer service abilities, keeping another $150 for himself for services rendered. Once both surveys were completed, he was to send the remaining money (after the WalMart purchase and $300 in "service fees") to the next selected shopper in the Philippines.

There are so many holes in this it isn't even funny — OK, maybe the stupidity of these con artists in this case is a little funny. First off, the check is fake, and if a bank were to cash it it would be taking money away from an unsuspecting victim, in this case an unnamed business according to the EPD.

Secondly, who in the world trusts someone to cash an over $2,000 check, and only keep $300 of it, much less ship the remaining money to someone else. Personally, I'm too honest to do such a thing, as I'm the type of person who would worry that somehow my checking account would be red-flagged after depositing a large sum of cash, causing my house to be ransacked by federal agents demanding answers as to who I'm working for and where the money came from. (Side note: I think I watch to many action thrillers.)

The point being, if something like what Chief Bolin received shows up in your mailbox, alert the authorities and toss the check into the trash (after shredding it into little bits, of course). As the saying goes, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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