2 arrested, 1 wanted in elderly scam

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Willie Jeffery, Norma Jean Jeffery and Johnny Jeffrey

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Police arrested a man and woman who they say stole jewelry from an elderly man while in his home trying to get him to pay for tree trimming and home repairs.  A third suspect is still at large.

Jacksonville Sheriff's Office investigators say this is one of several crimes fitting a similar pattern of taking advantage of homeowners, often elderly.  IN this case, from May 23, a man and woman knocked at the victim's door and told her she needed a limb cut down before it fell on the power lines and JEA would charge her for the damage. They further told her that she had some shingles on her roof that needed to be nailed down.

While in the victim's home, the man noticed religious artifacts and asked to pray with the victim, then told her he would like to purchase some of her religious artwork.  They agreed on a price for the tree trimming work, which she paid in cash.

After they suspects left, the victim noticed $3,000 worth of jewelry was missing from her bedroom.

According to police, the suspects had two small children with them.

Police arrested Willie Jeffery, 22, on charges of grand theft, possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana. Norma Jeffery, 21, was arrested on charges of grand theft, dealing in stolen property, false verification of ownership of pawned items and child neglect.

The suspects are believed to be related even though they gave different spellings of their last names.

Police obtained an warrant for the arrest of a third suspect, 23-year-old Johnny Jeffrey, a resident of Starke, Fla., on charges of dealing in stolen property and false verification of ownership of pawned items, but he remains at large.

Anyone with information about his whereabouts or believes they were also victimized by these suspects is asked to call the JSO at 904-630-0500.

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