Investigators with the Aiken Department of Public Safety have arrested two individuals for obtaining money by false pretenses and soliciting without a license.
Investigators arrested Kendra Lachell Morris, 21, of Augusta, and Zachary Lacasey Sims, 20, of Augusta. A third individual was also participating, police said, but was unable to be located.
On Wednesday, Morris and Sims were soliciting money from motorists along Fabian Drive in Aiken, officials said.
They were reportedly carrying signs that indicated they needed money to bury a family member. They were collecting the money in Halloween pumpkins they had just purchased, officials said. They were able to obtain several hundred dollars from resident before being arrested, according to police.
Upon speaking with the Morris and Sims, each one provided a different name and funeral home of the alleged deceased person, officials said.
Officials said investigators contacted the funeral homes and there were no deceased people there by that name.
After being arrested, one of the suspects admitted the scheme was fraudulent, and they were using the money they received to pay their bills, officials said.
The City of Aiken has an ordinance against individuals soliciting without first obtaining a license. The license ensures the individuals are representing an organization or have a legitimate cause for obtaining the money.
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