A 19-year-old con man was arrested for defrauding a car dealership out of $100,000

In the early hours of a recent Sunday, a teenager was apprehended by the Apache, Oklahoma police force. The arrest came months after the young man was accused of swindling a car dealership out of nearly $100,000. The suspect, 19-year-old Zachry Brent Bailey, was taken into custody around 3 a.m. on an existing felony warrant.

According to local news outlet KFOR in Oklahoma City, Bailey visited a car dealership on April 19 with the intention of selling an Acura MDX. Despite initial suspicions due to his young age, the dealership agreed to buy the vehicle for $48,000 after discovering that only $1,713.23 was owed on it. Bailey walked away with a check for $46,272.97 that day.

Bailey returned to the dealership on May 1 to sell a 2023 Toyota Tundra. The agreed-upon price was $66,500. The dealership discovered that the loan on the Tundra was through First Help Financial and the payoff amount was $2,244, resulting in Bailey receiving a check for $64,256.

However, it was later discovered that Bailey had made fraudulent transfers on the outstanding balances of the Acura and Toyota loans the day before selling the vehicles. The transfers were reversed two days after the vehicles were sold, revealing the full amount owed. As a result, the banks refused to release the titles due to the outstanding loan payoff.

Court documents also revealed that the dealership noticed three ACH transfer attempts on May 3. One of these transfers was to C3 Rentals for $23,500, while the other two were to the finance company for $4,999.99 and $3,689.68 respectively.

An arrest warrant was issued for Bailey on August 1. On August 12, Apache Police Officer Ben Lehew received information that Bailey might be in the Apache area. Lehew conducted a background check on Bailey and discovered that he was the subject of several news stories comparing him to Frank Abagnale Jr., the infamous teen con artist portrayed by Leonardo DiCaprio in the movie “Catch Me If You Can.”

Lehew also discovered that law enforcement officials in other states were interested in speaking with Bailey for allegedly impersonating a physician and obtaining expensive housing, vehicles, jewelry, and electronics. In one instance, Bailey was accused of driving an older surplus police vehicle and possessing a bulletproof vest, duty belt, ammunition, and a “ghost gun” – a gun without a serial number. This led Texas police to suspect that Bailey was impersonating a peace officer.

With the assistance of other law enforcement agencies, Officer Lehew was able to locate and arrest Bailey without incident. Bailey was taken to the Caddo County Jail and is being held on a $200,000 bond.