A local woman is building a reputation on panhandling in major shopping centers around Lubbock. Wednesday, multiple sources report her exploiting the Las Vegas shooting to scam people for money. Thursday, she denied all allegations.
EverythingLubbock.com confronted the middle-aged woman during a panhandling incident in a South Lubbock shopping center. Two girls gave her money for gas after the woman said, “I just told them the truth, I’m without a job and I need some help.”
When asked if she told people her family is in Las Vegas, she denied all claims and repeated that she is going through a hard time. He family confirmed she has been panhandling for years.
“Embarrassing and sad that my mother would do that,” Woman’s Daughter Krista said.
The woman’s family reached out to EverythingLubbock.com to apologize on her behalf and confirm her scamming history. They said they want her to get help she needs and to get on a better path.
“For her to come and say ‘Hey I have family that lives in Vegas,’ it’s heartbreaking because you don’t even know what happened and are just using someone else’s story to try to benefit yourself,” Local Employee Pamela Schjamg said. “If you do see her, try to go the other way because she will hound you until she gets to talk to you in your face.”
“I can’t believe this lady is just roaming out there,” Linda Perkins said after she was approached by the woman. “She needs help. She’s not just victimizing people but she’s harming her own self and that’s sad.”
Lubbock Police said they have been made aware of this issue after several reports were made.
“She’s had so many opportunities to change and so many people want to help her out and she’s cried wolf so many times that no one wants to anymore,” Krista said.
Krista is out of harms way and under other guardianship until she turns 18. She said her mother’s behavior has been affecting her for years.
“I don’t understand why she does this to herself and to other people that love her,” Krista said.”It affects me a lot actually but I just have people that love me and support me in every way but it’d be nice to have my mother.”
Community members and family said they want to help this woman get the tools she needs to get a better path if she is willing to accept the help.
“I’m sorry she’s asking and harassing people because I know people have family who’s actually been through the Las Vegas thing and I’m sorry she lies about it and makes you feel worse because you’ve actually had people that it has happened to. I hope she can change but I don’t know.”