David Tripp, also known as fashion blogger The General Aesthete, was nabbed by police after he ran a credit card fraud scheme that racked up a bill in the thousands of dollars—by posing as a celebrity stylist on the phone.
Tripp was not fooling around when it came to his purchases. He snagged roughly $2,058 of gear on March 27 from Carven, $1,254 worth of clothing from Marni on April 14, and a nearly $5,842 worth merchandise at Jil Sander on April 28.
How did he get away with all this? By posing as Johnny Depp's stylist on the phone. According to the shop staff at Jil Sander, after he placed his order via phone call, he inevitably came into the boutique with plenty of shopping bags in tow, paid, and then left. The team at the shop assumed nothing was amiss, and only realized something was fishy when the charged bounced weeks later.
Tripp finally met his end during another round of shopping, this time posing as a stylist for Brandon Flowers at the Marc Jacobs store on Bleecker Street. He called the shop doing his usual routine, asking for clothes on behalf of a celebrity for an upcoming photoshoot.
When speaking on the call the store's manager Brian Britt said, "We have legit stylists call, so it's not that far-fetched."
Ultimately Tripp fell flat while using a fake name. Posing as a stylist named "Kelly," he agreed with Britt to scan a pay form and return it back to the store. When he sent back the form, Britt realized he spelled his name "Kelli" this time around. That threw up red flags for Brit, who quickly discovered that he was using the information of a completely unrelated woman's business.
When it came time to actually pick up the order in person, Britt stalled Tripp within the store long enough to call the police. He stands charged of identity theft and grand larceny, and was released on bail.
What does Tripp have to say about the matter? In a statement via email, he said, "I can say that the narrative in which I’ve been placed is unequivocally inaccurate and unjust.”
[via The New York Times]