An alleged scam artist who Montgomery County police said targeted an elderly Maryland man by persuading him that he needed repairs to his home is at large, prompting authorities to issue a warrant for the man’s arrest and warn local residents to be on guard for similar scams.
Joseph Allen Sprinkel, 30, and his accomplice, Virginia Breeden, 49, allegedly came to the door of a 91-year-old man in Olney last June and convinced him that his chimney needed $825 in repairs, police said. Sprinkel and Breeden performed the work but left the man’s home without payment after a family member arrived and threatened to call the authorities, police said. A licensed general contractor later told investigators that the work served no purpose.
Breeden, of Spotsylvania, Virginia, was arrested in October, police said. Sprinkel, who was identified in early April, has been charged with attempted theft, attempted financial exploitation of a vulnerable adult, conspiracy, and acting as an unlicensed contractor. Anyone with information should call Montgomery police at (301) 279-8000.