VICTORVILLE (CBSLA.com) — Robert Cortez bought an iPad Mini on Wednesday for his wife, who recently lost her job and needs it to look for work.
“I was excited when he brought it in to me. I was, like, awesome, like, I can start looking for stuff,” Tamara Cortez said.READ MORE: Heal The Bay Beach Cleanup Effort Slated For Saturday At Santa Monica Beach
Certainly, $80 dollars for a $600 iPad seemed like a deal, or so Robert thought, until he got it home and took a good look at what he bought from a stranger.
“Come to figure out its a piece of tile. I got burned,” Robert said.
The deal happened in a grocery store parking lot in Victorville. A man in an SUV pulled up to Robert as he walked into the store and asked if he wanted to buy the iPad Mini for a great deal.
Another man in the high desert sent CBS2/KCAL9 two photos of a fake Apple computer he says he bought in a parking lot last year for $400. It was also tile.READ MORE: Bat Found At Laguna Niguel Regional Park Tests Positive For Rabies
“This is definitely something that somebody put their time and effort into,” Tamara said.
A quick glance and you, too, might miss the red flags, but a longer look and the flaws stand out, like the crooked lettering and shoddy packaging.
“Angry,” Robert said of how he felt later. “I got a punching bag that took most of the work.”
Embarrassed, the couple called deputies, told their story and said the suspect’s SUV had plates from Nevada. Jodi Miller, a spokeswoman with the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department, said it’s the first she’s heard of a crime like this in the high desert.
Would Robert buy from someone again?MORE NEWS: New $500M Skyscraper Proposed For Sunset Blvd. In Hollywood
“No. No,” he said. “This is what you’ll get. It’s maybe something else that’s not real.”