For at least a few dozen Metro readers, the picture of a man that appeared on the front page of the Feb. 24 edition was instantly recognizable.
“I could not believe my eyes when I saw him on the cover,” one reader wrote Metro.
The reader was one of more than a dozen people who said they, too, had allegedly been scammed by a man named Elliot. Victims have said they are approached by Elliot, mostly near T stations, and he tells them he needs money because his car is about to be towed with his family inside. Victims said he is well-dressed and gives them his real phone number and promises to return the money.
After Metro reported that police were investigating the man who has scammed countless of people in and around Boston, Elliot apparently continued to collect.
Daniel, who did not want his last name used, said he was walking from the Central Square station to a friend’s place in Cambridge late Saturday night when Elliot tapped him on the shoulder and told him he needed $39.99.
Daniel took a picture of Elliot and gave him his phone number expecting to get his $40. Soon after they parted ways, Daniel said he realized he had been scammed.
“It’s embarrassing,” he said, adding that he called police and intended to file a report in person.
“I think the more charges against him the more likely he could be stopped.”
When reached by phone Thursday, Elliot did not offer a reason why he approached people for the money, but did offer an apology.
“I deeply regret having misled anyone and never meant to hurt anyone,” he said.
Police said Elliot is known to them and that he has a criminal record with an open larceny case that took place last year in the Fenway. He is due back in court in April.
“We urge anyone that believes they have been a victim to contact Boston Police,” said Jake Wark, a spokesman for Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley.