A misdemeanor fraud investigation by the Wagoner County Sheriff’s Office turned into a felony arrest recently.
On Sept. 10, Wagoner County Sheriff’s Deputies took a fraud report from the victim, Jerry Keizor. Keizor stated that he had noticed an ad for T-Posts on a social media for sale site. Keizor stated that he reached out to the ad and was contacted by Johnny Ferrell (suspect).
Keizor stated that he met up with Ferrell in Wagoner County with cash in hand. Keizor stated that Ferrell did not have the T-Posts and told Keizor that a lot of people wanted them.
Keizor stated that Ferrell told him that he needed $380 as a deposit and Ferrell promised to deliver the T-Posts shortly afterwards. Keizor stated that he got a receipt from Ferrell, as well as a picture of Ferrell’s driver’s license.
After almost two weeks of texting and calling Ferrell, Keizor stated that Ferrell would not deliver the items purchased or return Keizor his money. Keizor told deputies that he felt like he got scammed. Deputies took the report as a misdemeanor fraud case.
Due to the recent influx of scam reports, Wagoner County Sheriff’s Investigators took a closer look at the case. Investigators were able to find that 49-year-old Ferrell of Rogers County had approximately eight pending fraud cases with Rogers County and Claremore Police Department, and at least one from another county.
It was discovered that Ferrell was placing ads on for sale sites for items like refrigerators, T-Posts, etc. Investigators learned that Ferrell was obtaining cash deposits from eager buyers for what appeared to be really good deals.
The buyers found out later they were scammed out of their money. It is unknown at this time just how many victims Ferrell actually scammed. Ferrell later confessed to several of the scams he orchestrated in an interview with law enforcement.
In cooperation with Claremore PD, Rogers County District Attorney, and Wagoner County District Attorney, Wagoner County Sheriff’s Investigators were able to use cases from Rogers County as enhancers to present charges on Ferrell with an encompassing felony charge. Ferrell’s Wagoner County charges are as follows:
• Pattern of Criminal Activity-Felony
• Obtaining money under false pretenses-Misdemeanor
“This case is a cautionary tale. There are predators lurking who’s only job is to separate money from people who are looking for a good deal. Especially on social media sites.” Wagoner County Sheriff Chris Elliott said. “You have heard the saying that if it sounds too good to be true. There is wisdom in that.
“I’m proud of the work my Investigators did on this case. What appeared to be a civil issue, or at the most was a misdemeanor fraud case, turned into uncovering a true prolific scam artist, and charging him with a felony. I’m very thankful for the working relationships we have with other agencies and prosecutors in this state, who have the same goal in protecting our citizens from the Ferrells among us.”