Johnny Lovell Jr. (Photos from Bedford Co. Sheriff's Office)
SHELBYVILLE, TN (WSMV-AP) -
A father and son are accused of tricking an elderly Shelbyville man out of more than $60,000 by pretending to be investment brokers.
"The two things hard to stomach in this profession are victimizing the very young or the elderly," said Shelbyville police Sgt. Brian Crews.
Crews said Johnny Lovell Sr. and Johnny Lovell Jr., both of Lebanon, were knocking on doors asking to do odd jobs, such as yard work. When they realized that one 88-year-old man had a lot of money, they convinced him they were investment brokers.
The men were arrested Friday in Shelbyville after attempting to cash a check for $29,000 at a local bank. Bank officials contacted police after noticing unusually high activity in the checking account.
"The victim was led to believe that this $29,000 was for an investment he'd be able to have a return of $4,000," Crews said.
The father and son had allegedly already cashed three other checks written by the same elderly man for a total of almost $60,000.
"We know they bought cars with the proceeds," Crews said.
The Lovells were jailed on $80,000 bond each, and police are wondering whether there may have been other possible victims.
Johnny Lovell Jr. was free on probation at the time of his Shelbyville arrest on suspicion of a similar scam in Nashville.
"They can come forward and let us know the areas of town in Shelbyville they've been in," Crews said.
The worst part in this investigation is the 88-year-old man will never recoup his $60,000 - it's gone. Police say the two suspects knew their target was vulnerable and took advantage.
They add that so often people are too embarrassed to come forward, but not reporting the crime only helps the scammers.
Copyright 2013 WSMV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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