Man Accused of Targeting Disabled for Theft

Police seek more victims

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Erika Gonzalez reports on a man accused of taking money from people with physical and mental disabilities. (Published Friday, Dec 2, 2011)

    Police are looking for more victims after the arrest of a man accused of taking advantage of people with physical and mental disabilities.

    Edward Jones has learned that if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

    Jones, who is disabled and relies on Social Security to make ends meet, met Deshaun Terry Johnson at the Wheaton Metro Station in May, Montgomery County police said. Johnson promised to get Jones a job as a janitor. Jones gave Johnson $700 for equipment and a uniform but didn’t get a job.

    Jones said he thought Johnson was his friend.

    “For him to take that money from him, it did have a little bit of an emotional impact on me,” said Montgomery County police Officer Sharif Hidayat.

    A concerned citizen told Hidayat that residents at the Inwood House, a residential community for mentally and physically disabled adults, may have been exploited. That’s where he met Jones.

    Now Jones knows what a real friend looks like.

    “I actually call him more of a guardian angel,” Jones said.

    Montgomery County police believe there could be more victims and encourage them to come forward.

    Johnson is charged with obtaining property from a vulnerable adult and various counts of theft scheme. He is in police custody.

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