Family trying to make it to NW Ohio for Christmas finds scammer

WILLIAMS COUNTY, Ohio (WTVG) - They were trying to make it back home to Williams County for Christmas. A last trip before one member of the family was about to be deployed overseas but this family ended up with more heartache than help.

At the last minute the Risk family found out they could get some time off from Fort Hood in Texas and make it back to the Bryan area to visit family. All before a deployment of their dad for Korea. But when reaching out for help they found someone who trying to do the exact opposite.

You know the name of international country star Toby Keith, a well know supporter of the military. When trying to get home before a deployment, Lisa Risk reached out to him and his team online asking to see if they'd help with finances to get them back to Williams County for Christmas.

"I got a message back from Toby Keith and I was really shocked. ‘Oh my goodness someone actually heard this and listened and looked at my message and was willing to help,’" and Risk.

The person on the other end actually started making payments to the Risk's credit cards after she gave them access to her online accounts. That made money available for the trip. They arrived in Williams County on Christmas Eve.

"We made our moms cry. They didn't know we were coming. So they were crying and so excited," said Risk.

The next day Risk started getting messages that the payments were being declined. Then the person wanted her to buy Google Play gift cards for some unknown reason. The family now starting to realize this probably wasn't really Toby Keith or his people.

"He's like don't worry about it. My management is still taking care of it. Don't worry about it. I said ‘no now I am worried about it,’" said Risk.

Now on top of the expenses from the trip all those credit card bills are still there.

"It makes me feel stupid for even like remotely believing in it. I went against my better judgment I guess I can say," said Risk.

Risk, like so many financial experts, now thinks she should have done more research before taking this offer. She hopes people learn from her experience and don't fall into something like this themselves.