Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Police: Beware of soul cleansing scam

Police in Santa Fe, New Mexico are warning people to be aware of women offering soul cleansings to ward off evil spirits. It’s already happened to at least one man whose soul may or may not have been cleansed, but his wallet and bank account certainly were.

The unnamed man was reportedly approached by three women in a Walmart parking lot. They said that he had a dark spirit following him and they offered to spiritually cleanse him so that the spirit would stop shadowing him.

He accepted and followed the women to their white van for the ritual.

The first hint that they may not have been on the up and up, was that they asked him to remove all his gold jewelry and all his cash and give it to them, because all that nasty material wealth was at the root of his spirit problems.

That was not enough to appease the spirits, however, so according to police they had him go into the Walmart and cash a check for $500. When he returned, they completed the ritual by ripping the bills in half — and keeping them, of course — wouldn’t want to sully up his soul again with all that dirty money.

Still unsure whether or not he had been scammed, the man reported the incident to police days later. Investigators tracked the women down at a local Motel 6. They said that the man had given them his jewelry, but that they did not have his cash. The jewelry was returned to him, and no charges filed against the women because they hadn’t committed a crime — technically.

The women said they plan to open up shop in Santa Fe and get a business license.

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