Update on Offer Up Forgery Investigation

On November 14, 2017, the complainant, Mrs. Barett, called police to report a Forgery by Counterfeit Money in which she was the victim of the offense on November 13, 2017. Ms. Barrett wanted to sell her property and posted the property on the Offer Up site. A black female suspect, calling herself Melissa, contacted Ms. Barrett by Offer Up and proposed to buy the property. The unknown suspect and Ms. Barrett agreed to meet at a restaurant at the 18100 block of Coit Road. Ms. Barrett exchanged the property for $800. Ms. Barrett discovered the next day that the money of the exchange was counterfeit.

On November 17, 2017, Dallas Police Detectives of the Financial Investigations Unit spoke to Ms. Barrett and determined that Ms. Barrett was the victim of a Forgery by Counterfeit Money offense that occurred using the Offer-Up application. Ms. Barrett provided the detectives a picture of the believed suspect taken from the Offer Up app. Ms. Barrett advised on multiple occasions that the individual in the picture was the person she met with during the exchange. The identity of the person could not be determined. On November 27, 2017, the detectives of this offense then forwarded the picture to the Dallas Police Media Relations Unit requesting the picture be posted on our blog in order to find information to identifying the suspect who victimized Ms. Barrett.

On November 29, 2017, detectives were contacted by the individual in the picture who was posted on the Dallas Police Department’s Blog. The person, Dr. Tamara Pizzoli, stated that this was her photo, but she was not in Dallas and she had not met with anyone buying property. Dallas Police detectives immediately determined that Dr. Pizzoli may also be a victim of impersonation. The detectives spoke to Dr. Pizzoli over the phone and apologized for the situation and ensured her that we would continue investigating to find the suspect who committed these offenses. The social media posts were immediately removed from the department’s social media sites. The Dallas Police Department is deeply sorry for the circulation of this photo to our blog. Detectives are still seeking information in this forgery offense and it remains an open and active investigation.