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Georgetown Police: Increase in fake gold sold at gas stations

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Posted at 6:34 AM, Sep 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-21 13:37:34-04

GEORGETOWN, Ky. (LEX 18) — Police in Georgetown are noticing an increase in people being approached and sold fake gold at gas stations, parking lots, and large crowds.

At Cravens and Lewis Jewelers in Georgetown, they have seen six to eight fake gold rings come in the past month and a half, co-owner John Lewis said. A single man also came in with two fake gold chains, two bracelets, and 4 rings. In his 51 years at the shop, Lewis said he has never seen this much fake gold come in so quickly.

People bringing in the gold said they bought it from people largely at gas stations, according to Lewis.

“Someone comes with a sad story that they need gas, food, or a way to travel,” he said his customers were told.

He’s had to break the news to them that the gold they bought, often for a couple hundred dollars, isn't real.

“They’re disappointed because they thought they were helping someone, [instead] they’ve been taken by a con artist rather than someone in need,” Lewis said.

Instead of gold, what Lewis has seen has largely been brass, which he says is worthless compared to a gold ring that could go for thousands. The brass may be painted gold, a loophole allowing for someone to say it is a “gold ring,” Lewis said.

“It’s not illegal what they’re telling you but it’s very corrupt,” Lewis said.

There are things you can look for when buying gold to make sure it is real. All gold products made after 1961 must have two stamps on them. One indicates the karrot of the gold and the other indicates the manufacturer, Georgetown Police said.