Chesapeake mom gets scammed by counterfeit $100 bills, police say it’s an issue in the area

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

CHESAPEAKE, Va. - A mom is scammed out of hundreds of dollars when she is given counterfeit $100 bills for selling her iPhone. Turns out, she isn't alone and police say it's a huge problem in the community.

Summer Tangen posted a rose gold iPhone 6+ for sale and met up with a buyer Wednesday. It's something she's done countless times before.

“We do do a lot of transactions on marketplace, craigslist, yard sale sites and such," said Tangen.

But this time was different. Tangen said she didn't listen to her gut instinct because of how badly she needed the money.

"I saw the money sitting in his lap. He had it fanned out from the bank envelope so I could indeed see that it was money in the envelope," said Tangen. As soon as the envelope was in her hand, the buyer took off and Tangen knew she was ripped off.

"As soon as I touched the money, I thought oh my gosh, no," said Tangen. "I was angry."

After meeting with a detective with Chesapeake, Tangen found out it's a problem plaguing the community.

“It did help to see how adamant he was about making sure he tried to get fingerprints off of it. This particular officer is very set on catching these guys. So I do feel like he’ll get justice for the guys who did this," said Tangen.

Now, Tangen said she has new experience to add to her resume of selling items. Her advice to others who sell include:

  1. Don't go by yourself
  2. If you're going to meet at a parking lot that's not the police station, pick one with security and surveillance cameras
  3. Use your cell phone to take pictures of the other person's license plate
  4. Pay attention to what the buyer/seller looks like
  5. Don't feel bad about holding up money to the light to check the holograms

"If I had made him get out of the car, check the money, I would have known and I wouldn’t have been ripped off. I really don’t want anybody else to have to feel like I did. Anyone else to break down like I did," said Tangen.

Specific key features of the new $100 note include:

  • Security thread running vertically to the left of the portrait of Benjamin Franklin
  • 3-D blue security ribbon. Upon movement, the bells will change to 100s
  • Bell in the orange inkwell
  • Watermark of Benjamin Franklin in the blank space to the right of his portrait
  • Color shifting ink in the numeral 100 at the bottom right
Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.