SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCBD) – The Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office has issued arrest warrants for 32-year-old Jessica Smith in connection to an alleged Facebook Marketplace scam.
Smith is also facing charges in Pennsylvania for allegedly faking cancer to collect $10,000 in donations on a GoFundMe page.
In September, Summerville couple Heather and BJ Faas purchased $2,4000 worth of gym equipment from a Facebook Marketplace listing posted by Smith.
“She gave me her phone number, so we were contacting through text and messenger and she also sent me a picture of her license so I thought okay, this has to be pretty legit,” said BJ Faas.
The Titus Strength and Fitness owners never received the items or shipping confirmation.
“BJ came to me and was like hey look, I think we have been scammed,” said Heather Faas. “She hasn’t really messaged me back. What should we do,” she added.
The Faas’ learned they were not alone. A podcast, The Ever Evolving Truth, revealed several other people who claimed they were scammed by the same woman.
“We don’t get bank loans. This is our hard-earned money that we have put forth to fund our own gym and this is our livelihood,” said Heather.
Following their discovery, the Faas’ filed a report with Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office. When they did not hear back from investigators, they called the Count on 2 Investigators.
Deputies filed arrest warrants less than two months after News 2 brought the case to their attention.
Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office Captain Michael Crumley said Smith will likely be charged with felony Breach of Trust with Fraudulent Intent.
Crumley said they will work with Pennsylvania officials to locate Smith and determine if she will be extradited back to South Carolina.
Crumley said a judge can order restitution for the Faas’ if Smith is found guilty in court. They can also recoup their losses if she agrees to a plea deal.
Smith faces up to 5 years in prison.
Investigators with the Uwchlan Township Police Department in Pennsylvania said Smith claimed to be suffering from cancer to collect donations from a GoFundMe page.
According to NBC affiliate WCAU, Smith’s scheme included pretending to have cancer, impersonating a doctor and nurse and lying about her own father dying.
On November 4, 2019, Smith turned herself into the Uwchlan Township Police Department. Her bond was set at $10,000.
Smith is facing additional charges in Delaware. According to WCAU, Wilmington Police charged Smith with Impersonating an Officer and Identity Theft.
The Count on 2 Investigators made several attempts to contact Smith.