Sunnyvale Couple Duped by Contractor Scam - NBC Bay Area

Sunnyvale Couple Duped by Contractor Scam



    A man posing as a contractor lured a woman into her backyard for 15 minutes while his partner went into her home and stole jewelry and other items. George Kiriyama reports. (Published Monday, May 20, 2013)

    If you get a knock on your door and a man says he's a contractor and wants to go in your backyard, ask him for identification and a phone number.

    Sunnyvale resident Ye Kang did not ask for ID and it cost her some precious jewelry.

    The Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety is looking for two men who scammed Kang early Friday afternoon. Ye Kang was alone at home when this happened. She was so shaken up over this, her husband, Sei Kang, spoke to NBC Bay Area on her behalf. Kang says his wife led a man to her backyard, believing the whole time the man was a contractor.

    "Knocked on door. Mentioning about fixing the back fence. So she opened the gate. Let him in," Kang said.

    Mrs. Kang talked to the poser for about 15 minutes as they talked about how to fix the fence that bordered her property with her neighbors. But the Kangs and Sunnyvale investigators now believe that 15-minute conversation was meant to be a distraction.

    "Another person came in through the gate and went inside the house and messed it up," Kang said.

    Investigators say a second man went into the Kang's bedroom and went through their drawers and cabinets. A watch and other jewelry were taken. 

    "Of course we're upset. That guy played with in coordination with the other guy. It's a two person job," Kang said.

    It was only after the so-called contractor left, Ye Kang realized she had been duped. Police notified the neighbors in the Lakewood Village neighborhood to keep their eyes out for anyone acting like contractors.

    "It's unfortunate that you can't you know trust nobody coming up to your door," Aldo Ramirez, a neighbor, said. "Nowadays you gotta be watching everything especially us since we have kids."

    The Kangs are upset someone took advantage of them...and even more concerning...someone was inside their home.

    "My wife was really scared and it was devastating," Sei Kang said.