Utility Scam Artist Turns Himself In: Deputies

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    NEWSLETTERS

    A South Florida man was arrested for allegedly trying to steal from an elderly woman in her home. Jamie Guirola reports. (Published Friday, Mar 28, 2014)

    The accused scam artist who was busted by an Oakland Park commissioner turned himself in after allegedly trying to steal from an unsuspecting elderly woman, according to the Broward Sheriff’s Office.

    Tom Bimbo was arrested Thursday afternoon and charged with burglary.

    On February 24, Bimbo attempted to rob the home of 87-year-old Shirley Sharkey and approached her come with another man wearing a reflective safety vest and hard hat.

    Oakland Park City Commissioner Tim Lonergan was at his home when he noticed the men at his neighbors’ home in a black Mercedes. He suspected something was wrong and took pictures of the car and its license tag, deputies said.

    In court Friday-prosecutors argued that he intentionally targeted his elderly victim because of her age and they say this isn't the first time he has done this.

    The men told the victim that they were with the water department and were having problems with water pressure in the area.

    "He began to ask me about how many people lived in the house, just questions that made me think,” Sharkey said.

    Meanwhile, the other suspect went into her bedroom while she was distracted and that’s when the commissioner came to the rescue.

    "I asked him a bunch of questions, where are your IDs [because] I didn’t recognize them as city employees,” Commissioner Lonergan said.

    The men then took off in a panic.

    Bimbo was given a $50,000 bond and because he is a repeat offender he is looking at some hefty time. Detectives are still looking for the other suspect.