Sunday, March 18, 2012
Attention, celebrities appearing on New York talk shows! Beware of the latest scam!
After your vehicle pulls in and you get out, you're accosted by a distraught woman. "Oh my God!" she wails. "Your SUV just ran over my paper cup!" She indicates a mangled paper cup on the pavement near your vehicle's tire as a few "random bystanders" nod in agreement.
Because you're a good person, you want to make things right. You offer to reimburse her for the paper cup. This calms her down. She claims the paper cup's replacement cost is $8. This seems high, but if you object, she starts to crank up the hysteria again. Anxious to end the unpleasantness, you hand over the $8 and hurry inside.
Of course, your SUV didn't run over the cup; she planted it there the instant you parked. And $8 is far too much to pay for a new paper cup. Savvy New Yorkers can usually get them for under $4. But by the time you realize all this, the scam artist and her confederates have gleefully pocketed their $2 each and are on to their next easy mark.
If you believe you have been a victim of the Paper Cup Scam, contact the Manhattan District Attorney's office.