Flagler Beach, FL - A 34-year-old Palm Coast woman is charged with Felony Scheme to Defraud, Felony Grand Theft, and four misdemeanor charges of Petit Theft in what Flagler Beach Police are calling a puppy scam. Investigators arrested Carissa Sarno yesterday (October 7) afternoon.
The investigation began when FBPD heard from five victims who said they either made down payments or paid in full for puppies that they never received. They all said when it was time to turn a puppy over, Sarno would not show up and stop all forms of communication with her victims. Detectives say that so far, the amount of fraud stands at $2,000.
According to Flagler Beach Police Chief Matt Doughney, “Plainly put, the suspect in this case pulled on the heartstrings of her victims. People love puppies because they spark joy. This suspect preyed on her victims by taking their money and their hopes of owning a loveable puppy. I’m extremely proud of the teamwork displayed by Detective Vinci and our Patrol Officers who worked in unison in order to hold this suspect accountable for her unlawful actions.”
Sarno's bond was set at $7,000 and she has already bonded out.
Chief Doughney concluded by stating “We’d like to thank the public for their valuable assistance on this case via our Facebook page. We anticipate that this news release may bring forward additional victims and we want any/all victims to know that coming forward takes courage.”
If you or someone you know has been scammed by Sarno, please contact Detective Vinci at (386) 517-2020 Ext. 307.