Financially struggling Mesa roommates received fake $100 bill

MESA, Ariz. (KSAZ) -- Struggling to pay the bills and trying to make ends meet, one group of folks in Mesa got together to hold a garage sale for a little extra money before Thanksgiving. One man, however, took advantage and got away with hard earned cash, and Mesa Police say it may have happened to other folks as well.

"I didn't think to check, so it was a very big eye opener for me," said Lyndsey Newport. It's been tough sledding for Newport since moving to Mesa from Central Illinois just three weeks ago, so she and her roommates held a garage sale to make a little extra cash.

One man, the last customer of the day, stood out.

"Browsed around, looked at a tool box, gave me a very sentimental story as he choked up a little bit, reminiscing over his father," said Newport.

But it was all just set up.

"I came in and I was obviously in a rush, I counted the change and was like here you go," said Newport.

He paid with a $100 bill, but it wasn't until the next morning they figured out they been duped.

"It was thin, it was floppy, you could see the black outline where the dollar had been cut," said Newport.

It was a fake. $90 profit, gone. It doesn't sound like much, but not to Lyndsey.

"That was our bill money. That was our gas money. That money was to take care of these three kids. That was our thanksgiving dinner money. It was everything. Absolutely everything. I was devastated," said Newport.

Thanksgiving will go on, and the anger will linger as well.

"He absolutely knew. 100%. He took the time to build a rapport with me and -- 'Cause I'm a very sentimental person," said Newport. "I have a heart of gold for anybody, and to hear him reminisce about his father and that toolbox and all the memories it brought up, and to see a grown man tear up, that tugged at my heart strings a lot."

If you would like to help this family out, visit their GoFundMe page.