Darby Teen Uses Facebook To snag Suspected Scam Artist

Darby Teen Uses Facebook To snag Suspected Scam Artist

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Malik McDowell, 29, allegedly was involved in a scam that used the social networking website Facebook. (Darby Borough Police Department) Malik McDowell, 29, allegedly was involved in a scam that used the social networking website Facebook. (Darby Borough Police Department)
DARBY , Pa. -

Scared to show her face--an 18-year-old college student is lashing out at the man charged with using Facebook to steal more than $1,000 from her bank account.

"Really mean to try and take advantage of people like that especially in front of the holidays."

Darby Borough Police say in early December--Malik McDowell contacted the teen on the popular social media website.

Posing as a TD  Bank employee named "Rob, " authorities say he promised  to give her $800 for a money transfer promotion.

The catch--the teen had to meet the 29-year-old man  at a Darby convenience store and hand over her debit card and pin number.

"If  someone approaches you with something that's too good to be true, it is too good. Nobody in this world today is giving away $800 free."

The college student learned that lesson the hard way.

After getting her card back from McDowell the next day she checked her account.

"When I checked my account it was like negative $1000 some dollars, " exclaimed the victim. "I really wasn't thinking it was a scam. I was just thinking about the holidays coming up and I had a bill for my tuition."

That college tuition paid off when the teen decided to teach the suspected cyber crook a lesson.

She set up a new Facebook page to lure McDowell. 

Authorities say he took the bait and scheduled a meeting at the 7-11 on Main St.

This time posing as "Kev."

But instead of meeting an easy mark—he was met by Darby Police and  handcuffs.

"He just made it real easy writing me again on Facebook. He was being real greedy and he got caught."

"She really should be a detective," smiled Chief Smythe. "She should go to the police academy and we would definitely hire her."

McDowell is now behind bars on $50,000 bail.

Police say he had three other debit cards and checks that didn't belong to him.

They believe McDowell  may be part of a larger crime ring that's  targeted others in the Philadelphia area.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim call Darby Borough Police at (610) 586-1100.

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