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Short-change con makes stop in Worthington

WORTHINGTON -- Authorities believe a short-change artist who stopped in Worthington this week was just passing through on Interstate 90 and has left the area, according to the Worthington Police Department.

Worthington police officer Chris Hillesheim said law enforcement officials were notified of the situation approximately an hour after the incident took place at a local grocery store. The store lost $50 during the "short count" con.

Change raising is a common short con and involves an offer to change an amount of money with someone, while at the same time taking change or bills back and forth to confuse the person as to how much money is actually being changed.

"It's pretty rare around here," Hillesheim said. "They have to be pretty good at what they're doing to confuse someone enough to get $50 out of it."

The suspect was described as a white male, approximately 40 years old, 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighing 180 pounds. He was wearing a Kansas City Chiefs jacket, authorities were told.

"He's still out there somewhere," Hillesheim said. "We haven't had any other calls on him, and we think he was just passing through on the interstate and moving on to the next town."

The best way to avoid a short change con is to slow down, Hillesheim advised.

"If you have somebody trying to rush a transaction, stop and focus on one transaction at a time," he stated. "They try to rush it along and get multiple exchanges going at once, and that's where the confusion comes in."