Rental Housing Fraud Suspect Arrested

Rental Housing Fraud Suspect Arrested

Case #23-4035

On Wednesday, May 31st, the LaSalle Police Service received information about a potential home rental fraud. Officers were informed that two groups of people attended the same residence at the same time to move in and had already paid the “landlord” first and last month’s rent. Through investigation, a third tenant, who had also paid the first and last month’s rent for the same residence, was identified. These individuals had all responded to a Facebook marketplace ad for a House for rent. They all visited the house with the landlord. The landlord committed fraud when she accepted the first and last month’s rent for the residence from three separate parties for the exact same time period, unbeknownst to each other.

The LaSalle Police Service has taken swift action by conducting a thorough investigation resulting in the arrest of a 43-year-old female LaSalle resident on Friday, June 2 in the Town of LaSalle.

To assist the investigation further, LaSalle Police are urging anyone who may have fallen victim to a similar crime to contact them at 519 969-5210 or to reach out to their local police service. Anonymous tips can be left with Crime Stoppers at 519-258-TIPS (519-298-2477) or online at


1. Research the listing: Thoroughly investigate the property and the person offering it for rent. Look for inconsistencies, such as unusually low prices or incomplete details.

2. Verify the owner/agent: Request identification and contact information from the owner or rental agent. Cross-check their details through on-line searches or by contacting relevant authorities. Avoid using the contact information provided solely in the listing, as it could be fraudulent.
3. Ask for references and ask to speak with previous tenants to verify that the landlord is legitimate and reasonable.

4. Avoid wire transfers: Be cautious of landlords who ask for up-front payments via wire transfers or prepaid debit cards. Use secure payment methods, such as credit cards or reputable on-line platforms. Be wary of requests for up-front payments: Exercise caution if asked to pay a large sum of money up-front or via unconventional payment methods. Legitimate landlords or agents typically follow standard rental procedures.

5. Visit the property: Whenever possible, visit the property in person before making any financial commitments. If distance is an issue, consider requesting a virtual tour or asking someone you trust to visit on your behalf.
6. Use trusted platforms: Utilize reputable rental platforms or well-known real estate agencies with a verified track record. Be cautious when dealing with independent or lesser-known websites or individuals.
7. Beware of unbelievably good deals: If a rental seems too good to be true, it probably is. Unrealistically low prices or pressure to make immediate decisions could be red flags.

8. Read the contract thoroughly: Carefully review the rental agreement, including terms and conditions, before signing anything. Seek legal advice if necessary.

9. Check the paperwork: Insist on proper rental agreements or contracts that outline terms and conditions. Review them carefully and seek legal advice if necessary.

10. Use trusted platforms: Utilize reputable rental platforms or work with established rental agencies to reduce the risk of fraud.

11. Trust your instincts: If something feels off or too good to be true, it’s important to trust your gut. It’s better to be cautious and avoid potential scams than to become a victim.

Remember, these tips can help minimize the risk of rental fraud, but they don’t guarantee complete protection. Always exercise caution and consider seeking legal advice when dealing with unfamiliar rental situations. If you encounter any suspicious activity, report it to the appropriate authorities immediately.