Locals scammed by fake jewelry

PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Tracy's Fine Jewelry in Panama City has seen its fair share of fake jewelry brought in but have seen more locals get scammed recently.

Tracy Miller, the manager of Tracy's Fine Jewelry said, "After a few, we start to see a little bit of a pattern. They're all stamped 18 karat from what we've seen but we've tested them and they're not real."

They say locals have come into their store after buying necklaces or rings from individuals only to find out they're fake, leaving some residents out hundreds of dollars.

Miller continued, "I've heard some people say they've been had for $50, some have been had for as much as $600. I heard from someone else that another man had paid $2,200 for a bunch of chains and rings."

They test the chain by rubbing it on a piece of whetstone and it leaves a rubbing on the stone. They then apply acid and if the chain is real, the rubbing remains.

It's a different reaction for the fake chain. The rubbing disappears after the acid is put on the stone.

Sheriff's officials say a number of scams are moving through our area including an IRS phone scam and an online credit card scam but say to use your better judgment before handing out money or information.

Ruth Corley, with the Bay County Sheriff's Office, said, "We'd like to warn everybody please don't fall for these scams. Be really skeptical. Be wary of winning lotteries you've never entered or someone that wants to give you employment but you just have to get yourself into big-time debt to work for us."

Miller added, "If something sounds too good to be true, it usually is."

The Sheriff's Office says to contact them if you or a family member have been victimized by a scam. If you want to report what you believe is a scam, Sheriff's officials say to call 850-248-2328.