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Second suspected church scammer arrested

Posted March 24, 2009

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— The second of two men suspected of preying on church congregations to obtain money has been arrested, authorities said Tuesday.

David Oneal Twitty, 45, of 7724 Elm Tree Lane in Charlotte, was arrested Monday and charged with obtaining property by false pretense. He was released on a $50,000 bond.

Authorities said Twitty and his son, Travis Terrell Twitty, have approached church congregations in at least a dozen North Carolina counties to seek financial help. They claim a family member has been injured or killed in an accident and take off after collecting hundreds of dollars in donations, authorities said.

Capt. Jeff Medlin of the Moore County Sheriff's Office said investigators have received reports of the same scam from churches in Wake, Durham, Orange, Alamance, Chatham, Granville, Harnett, Lee, Montgomery, Moore, Randolph and Richmond counties.

Churches in Georgia, Tennessee, South Carolina and Virginia also have reported similar scams as far back as 1997 from a man identifying himself as David Twitty, Medlin said.

Travis Twitty, 20, also of 7724 Elm Tree Lane in Charlotte, was arrested Saturday as he was trying to leave a Charlotte church, where members said he was trying to obtain money from them, police said. He was charged with obtaining property by false pretense and was released on a $15,000 bond.

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  • PirateHeist Mar 24, 2009

    "least this "club" uses the money for good (i.e. food pantry for the needy, clothing closets, mission trips etc." What percentage? If I didn't have to pay taxes I could and would be a lot more generous as well! As to it being a scam, most clubs don't promise things they cannot provide or scare old folks and kids with tales of hell. This case is just illegal crooks stealing from legal ones.....
    haggis basher

    ---

    You must be a glass is half empty kind of guy. I think everyone is entitled to their beliefs and so if someone wants to give their money to church let them! I certainly don't but that isn't to say there aren't plenty of other useless things people spend their money on that offer even LESS social output and likely more corrupt.(SEE: World of warcraft, lottery, Sports etc.) Oh and as for tax exemptions there are plenty of other charities you can give to if you don't agree with a religious one. But, let me guess, those are all scams too?

  • Mom2two Mar 24, 2009

    Churches in the Garner community formed Garner Area Ministries to address just these types of scams. Scammers would "shop" the churches collecting at each one. GAM gave churches a place to send people who needed assistance. They screen the applicants, limit them to one assistance per year (I think), give money only to the landlord/power company/other need, and not directly to the person, along with some groceries. This is supported by the local churches and a thrift store open to the public. It is a great organization of great benefit to the Garner community.

  • b4jesus2 Mar 24, 2009

    They came to my church and give this story and they were good at telling it...right down to quoting scripture...I am thankful I didn't give any money,but many at our church did. The people gave out of the heart....I had a feeling they were not telling the truth is why I didn't. Yes they were very very wrong to do that and God will judge them. Get 'em Lord.

  • haggis basher Mar 24, 2009

    "least this "club" uses the money for good (i.e. food pantry for the needy, clothing closets, mission trips etc." What percentage? If I didn't have to pay taxes I could and would be a lot more generous as well! As to it being a scam, most clubs don't promise things they cannot provide or scare old folks and kids with tales of hell. This case is just illegal crooks stealing from legal ones.....

  • PirateHeist Mar 24, 2009

    No matter your religious beliefs, the majority of churches use donations to help the community and maintain the church building itself. How is a church "scamming" people out of their money? It is no different than a club that you pay dues for and at least this "club" uses the money for good (i.e. food pantry for the needy, clothing closets, mission trips etc.). The people who pretend to be so "open-minded" and blaming conservative people for being "narrow minded" need to take an honest look in the mirror.

  • PrayerWorks Mar 24, 2009

    The only thing we can do is pray for people, it was wrong what they did, but churches need to use widsom when helping people because there are people who have the wrong motives. The church don't make anybody give money, people give of their own feel will.

  • carltonstephen2 Mar 24, 2009

    The Churches are the biggest scammers on the earth. what they did is NO DIFFERENT than what the churches do to people every sunday. Not to say what they did was right at all, but please can we arrest some of the preachers too then.

  • WRALblows Mar 24, 2009

    This is not a scam. It is fools and their money parted.

  • WRALblows Mar 24, 2009

    "You don't pay taxes, you shouldn't get police services."

    Amen.

  • give me no quarter Mar 24, 2009

    The inability to see anything wrong with stealing from churches mirrors the sad state of this Nation.

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