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Scammers in Atlanta

Posted in news stories by Administrator on the May 20th, 2010

I’m not making this stuff up!! Last night,while preparing dinner, I received a call from a man who needed me to let him into his house. As I worked we talked and I told him about the criminal locksmiths and how they would charge 3-4x more for a similiar service. Later, on the 11pm news, thisĀ  story was aired:

Locksmith: ‘It Doesn’t Matter’ If He Charges Too Much

Uncertified LocksmithsOvercharge Customers

by Jeff Chirico, CBS Atlanta Reporter
POSTED: 12:20 pm EDT May 19, 2010
UPDATED: 6:15 pm EDT May 19, 2010

DULUTH, Ga. — A CBS Atlanta undercover investigation exposes so-called locksmiths without basic skills, overcharging customers. Investigative reporter Jeff Chirico caught three men working as locksmiths who charged two to four times more than they should.”I trust he would give me the right information,” said Caye Carscallen, office administrator of Cornerstone Church in Duluth. Carscallen hired a locksmith to replace locks after the church was burglarized in August. Carscallen said the locksmith charged her $4,113 for a job that she later learned should have cost less than a $1,000.”He’s smart and sneaky,” said Carscallen of the locksmith.Jack Wynn, president of the Georgia Chapter of the Associated Locksmiths of America said when you call a locksmith found in the yellow pages or an online search, “you never know what you’re going to get.” He said the majority of locksmith listings are for untrained professionals.CBS Atlanta hired three locksmiths to unlock a door to a home. None of the three picked the lock –the cheapest solution to a lockout. Two locksmiths said drilling out the lock was the only option. It is also the most expensive option.When Chirico asked one worker named Joseph the Tough Questions, he admitted that “I can’t pick the lock. I usually drill because it’s much more easy.” When Chirico mentioned that it also costs the homeowner more, Joseph responds “It doesn’t matter.”Kevin Wilson a master locksmith, said Joseph makes all locksmiths “look like bumbling idiots when we’re actually highly trained professionals.”Joseph admits he’s not a professional, but also maintains there’s nothing wrong with overcharging customers. He responded to Chirico, “I didn’t force you. I didn’t hold you hostage or hold a gun to your head.” Chirico responded, “But you weren’t honest and say you didn’t know how to pick a lock so it’s going to cost you more.” Joseph angrily replied “look into my eyes. I’m very honest. And I’m going to look into the camera, and I’m very honest.”State representative Harry Geisinger introduced legislation that would require licensing of locksmiths. It was not considered before the legislative session ended in April.