Dog Sitting Scam: Psycho Craigslist Dog Sitter Fakes Her Own Death…
December 6, 2018
After a close call with a dog sitter put Jenny Thompson’s two dogs in danger, she decided to dig a lot deeper into someone’s history before letting them into her home.
“Honestly, I was way luckier than some. I wasn’t hurt — and Django and Lulu were fine. But it got crazy,” said Jenny, who hired Sarah from an ad on Craigslist. They met in person, and Django – the border collie mix, and Lulu, a miniature Australian Shepard, seemed to like her a lot. Like many dogs, Django gets nervous in boarding facilities, so Jenny opts to have her sitters “move in” to her home in Baltimore while she travels.
But when Jenny returned home from her trip nine days later, she immediately knew that something wasn’t right. As soon as she opened the door, she noticed the smell – and the stains. The dogs must’ve been left alone for a long time or they would never go in the house. Then she noticed that their dog beds weren’t anywhere to be found. And finally, she discovered a set of perfectly clean, folded bedsheets had been tossed in the washer… unused.
Piecing it all together, Jenny realized that Sarah must’ve left the dogs alone for a long time, realized that would be a problem, and took them somewhere else, without her permission.
Sarah had lied to Jenny – she potentially put her dogs in harm’s way – and didn’t even sleep there once!
She had paid Sarah in advance for the next week, so Jenny told Sarah she could never watch the dogs again and asked for the $150 back. Here’s where it gets really crazy…
Days later, Jenny received this text from a number claiming to be Sarah’s dad. He describes a horrible accident on the Washington beltway, details of the hospital Sarah was taken to, and asked for prayers. The next day, another text that her lung had collapsed… then that she had been put into a medically induced coma… and finally, that she had DIED.
Could this possibly be true?
Jenny didn’t want to think the worst, but too many things had happened for her “spidey senses” not to be tinging.
She checked Google and Facebook, and saw nothing about the accident or any concerned messages from friends.
She couldn’t imagine someone would go to these lengths over $150, but she couldn’t deny the evidence.
Not only were there no messages from friend, but after she “died,” Sarah had actually updated her Facebook profile.
So here’s a girl that looped friends into a scheme and faked her own death…to save $150!
It was from that moment on that Jenny decided she was going to be much more careful about people she let into her home and around her dogs. But when she started to look into it, she discovered that digging deeper was easier said than done.
Background checks were a good start, but she found that they were limited: data often came up incomplete, never updated, or never checked again.
Then she learned that more than 40% of crimes are never even reported. And only 16 states even have 100% electronic reporting available. It was so hard to know who to trust.
And, obviously, this isn’t just the case for dog sitters. It’s also for babysitters, elder care, handymen, housekeepers, or anyone else that you’re looking to hire in your home.
So Jenny spent the next year developing a virtual trust badge called SafetyPIN. It’s the easiest way to tell who you can trust in the online economy, and can be displayed on any profile. She worked with retired NYPD criminal profilers, the former head of White House security, and leading psychologists to develop a simple tool that lets you know if someone is safe before you meet them in real life.
Jenny was lucky. She was fine and her dogs were home and safe. But we hear horror stories every day about babysitters, dangerous dates, criminals scamming people on shopping apps…and the list goes on. SafetyPIN is the best way to get – and give – peace of mind.
It costs only $1 to apply for a SafetyPIN. It’s the best way to know who to trust, before it’s too late.
Watch this short video to learn more about how asking for a SafetyPIN can keep you safer: