Arrest made in Kennewick rental scam that may have reached Spoka - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Arrest made in Kennewick rental scam that may have reached Spokane

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Officers arrested Maggie Zieske and Steve Hartmann last week. Officers arrested Maggie Zieske and Steve Hartmann last week.
KENNEWICK, Wash. -

Know your landlord. That's the message from police in the Tri-Cities, where officers say they're tracking a rental scam that may have targeted people as far as Spokane.

Kennewick Police say they know of at least half a dozen people who have been scammed, and now they're asking for more victims to come forward.

Officers arrested Maggie Zieske and Steve Hartmann last week. But if you did any rental business with them, police say they may have been scamming you. Keep in mind, they could have been using different names.

Investigators say the two would break into foreclosed or empty homes, change the locks, and then rent them out.

Kennewick Police Sergeant Ken Lattin says the couple stole thousands of dollars from deposits and months of rent.

"In most of the cases, the people were like, 'This seems too good to be true right?'" Lattin explained. "These monthly payments are really low, this is really cheap, an easy way to get into a house. Well of course it was, it was too good to be true."

In one case, police say one man installed an HVAC system at a home he thought was under a rent to own agreement, but it wasn't.

If you think you may be involved in this scam, you'll want to give Kennewick Police a call at (509) 585-4208.

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