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by Karin L. Nauber

karin@inhnews.com

Diana Chromey isn’t afraid to tell you what is on her mind. She’s always been that way. 

Except, that is, for the time about three years ago when she fell victim to a scam artist who preyed on her when she was at a weak point in her life.

It started off innocently enough.

Diana plays games on Facebook. She liked to go into the game chat rooms and talk with others.

“That is where they lure you in,” she said.

The scammers are often looking for divorced, older women who make easy targets because, as in Diana’s case, they want to be made to feel special again.

Scammers are great at picking up on people who are in a vulnerable place, like Diana was when “Williams Campbell” stepped into her life.

She had just gone through her divorce and wasn’t in a good place.

Hurt and vulnerable, Diana opened herself up to the kind man who was very good looking and giving her the attention she needed.

“He told me he cared about me and really needed my help,” said Diana of her scammer.

He told her that he was an American and was “stuck” in another country because the company he worked for had sent him there and then just left him there with no way to return to the United States.

“Campbell” told her that he would pay her back when he got home and then they could move to his home in Texas.

“They tell you the things you want to hear. They control your mind and your emotions—especially if you are vulnerable,” she said.

At first when concerned friends would say that this story didn’t sound quite right, Diana would ignore them.

But later, a neighbor/friend in Hewitt convinced her that she was being taken.

But unfortunately, she was already $15,000 into the scam.

“I had pawned a bunch of my stuff so I could send him money. I felt so stupid,” she said.

Diana suffered a nervous breakdown.

When she was a little more herself again, she began researching to see who “Williams Campbell” really was.

“He would call me at 3 a.m. and say he was surprised I was still alive. He asked me why I hadn’t killed myself yet?” said Diana.

Unfortunately, it is an all too common occurrence for women  (and men) who are scammed when they find out, to take their own lives.

It happened to another of “Williams Campbell’s” victims.

She was scammed out of $49,000 and committed suicide because of her despair.

When Diana found out about this, she knew she had to help the woman’s children who were demanding justice on behalf of their dead mother. . . .

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