comments

Officials warn DNC visitors of scams

More Information

  • More information

    The Better Business Bureau offers these tips to people buying event tickets or hotel rooms from third parties:

    • Only buy from trusted businesses or people. Look for businesses with a strong history of customer satisfaction.

    • Ask for references and contact them about their experiences with a broker.

    • Beware of counterfeit tickets.

    • Before paying for a hotel room, contact the hotel to ensure the rooms are actually held by the seller.

    • Pay with a credit card in case the charge needs to be challenged. When purchasing tickets online, deal only with secure websites.

    • Be cautious of anyone who wants payment upfront with the promise that the tickets will be delivered later.



CHARLOTTE, N.C. People buying event tickets and hotel rooms for next week’s Democratic National Convention could be targeted by scammers, officials say.

Better Business Bureau of Southern Piedmont President Tom Bartholomy said credentials to see President Barack Obama deliver his acceptance speech at Bank of America Stadium, which were handed out recently, will likely go on sale on Craigslist and eBay. But the BBB warns that some credentials sold by third parties could be counterfeit.

Bartholomy said legitimate credentials have security features. People with fake tickets will be turned away, he said.

Another warning from the BBB involves a Missouri ticket broker who has been linked to recent Craigslist ads for a “Democratic National Convention/Hotel Helpline.”

Wendell Southerland, who lives near St. Louis, was accused earlier this year of tricking a football fan out of $5,200 for Super Bowl tickets, officials said.

The BBB said Southerland booked 10 rooms at Charlotte Marriott City Center in advance of the DNC. The hotel gave Southerland confirmation numbers, but when employees tried to run his credit card for the deposits, the card was rejected, officials said.

This is at least the fourth time in recent months Southerland hasn’t paid after booking rooms for major events, raising concerns that he may try to use hotel confirmation numbers to resell the rooms to visitors, according to the BBB.

In February, a man reported to authorities that he’d paid Southerland $5,200 for Super Bowl tickets that he never received. Officials said Southerland also failed to pay for more than 30 rooms he’d booked at three hotels for next year’s Super Bowl in New Orleans.

The BBB urges that people use caution when dealing with Southerland or his business, Ex Sport Group.

Cooke: 704-358-5067
Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.

Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email local@charlotteobserver.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.

  Read more



Hide Comments

This affects comments on all stories.

Cancel OK

The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.

Have a news tip? You can send it to a local news editor; email local@charlotteobserver.com to send us your tip - or - consider joining the Public Insight Network and become a source for The Charlotte Observer.

  Read more


Quick Job Search