DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – Investigators say a Daytona Beach woman defrauded more than half a dozen people over nine months after telling them she needed their help due to tragic circumstances and asking them to deposit fraudulent checks.
The Daytona Beach police report shows Laura Dekeyzer, 39, told the victim’s various “sob” stories to earn their sympathies and get them to deposit fraudulent checks that appeared to be from Gary Yeoman’s Honda.
An employee at Gary Yeoman’s Honda contacted Daytona Beach police in April after discovering five suspicious checks that appeared to come from the dealership were cashed at local banks totaling $3,120.
Investigators said they later determined Dekeyzer obtained $10,766.80 from seven victims through these fraudulent practices over a period of nine months.
One victim told investigators Dekeyzer approached him outside a Wells Fargo and said her children were in the hospital and she needed money but didn’t have a bank account. The victim allowed Dekeyzer to deposit a $534 check into his account and then withdraw the amount in cash, according to the report.
Dekeyzer exchanged numbers with that victim saying she would stay in touch to pay him back, resulting in two more occasions where Dekeyzer used the victim’s bank account to cash fraudulent checks totaling $1,604, according to the report.
Another victim told police she was approached by a woman outside the Wells Fargo bank on North Ridgewood Avenue and asked to deposit a check into her personal bank account and then take the cash out.
The victim said the woman told her a “sob story” saying she was robbed and only had the check left, according to the report.
Dolores Vono, 88, told News 6, Dekeyzer stole $200 from her at a Wells Fargo on Beville Road.
“I was a little bit afraid of her," Vono said. "She says to me, ‘Now I need your number’ and I said, ‘What number?’ She says, ‘Your card.’ I should have known better.”
Vono said she’s learned her lesson to be more vigilant.
“I’m not going to let nobody get me again," Vono said. "I’ll tell you that.”
Each victim said that after depositing the check they took out the cash and gave it to Dekeyzer, however, when they checked their accounts later the check had been withdrawn from their accounts because it was a fake.
Dekeyzer was identified and arrested Dec. 5 after police say she approached one of her victims at The Preserve Condominiums where she was staying as a guest. After the victim discovered the fraud he went to the condominium management to identify the woman and told the police.
Volusia County Jail records show Dekeyzer is charged with obtaining property by fraud, grand theft less than $20,000, possession of cocaine, possession of a check with intent to defraud, grand theft less than $5,000 and possession of an ID with the intent to misrepresent.
Dekeyzer was currently on probation at the time of her arrest. She was ordered held without bail due to the violation of probation.