Deputies: Lincoln City man rented out homes he didn't own - WFXG FOX54 Augusta - Your News One Hour Earlier

Deputies: Lincoln City man rented out homes without owner's knowledge

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SHERWOOD, OR (KPTV) -

If 40-year-old Jason Dimicelli is your landlord, deputies want to hear from you.

Lincoln County deputies say he is responsible for a Craigslist scam that has put renters in multiple counties out of their homes.

Dimicelli was arrested in May for renting out a Newport home without the owner's permission. Further investigation has linked Dimicelli to residential properties in Lincoln, Clatsop, Yamhill and Washington counties.

In Sherwood, Shelly Taylor believes she was a victim of the scam. She had been renting a home there from Dimicelli for only two weeks when she started noticing red flags – the home had no smoke detectors, and basic maintenance had been neglected. Further research showed the home was actually bank-owned.

"I was very suspicious, and I even asked him, ‘How do I know this isn't a Craigslist scam?' and he said, ‘You just have to trust me,'" Taylor said.

Taylor said Dimicelli had all the paperwork in order, including a lease agreement and a business with a registered address. It wasn't until she Googled Dimicelli's name this weekend that she saw news reports of the arrest.

"The house was a disaster from the get-go," Taylor said.

Although she only actually lived there two weeks, Taylor says she had already paid Dimicelli $2,000 and done hundreds more in upgrades to the home – including replacing the missing smoke detectors.

Now Taylor says she is out the money, and out of a place to rent.

Deputies say many of the homes in the investigation were either in foreclosure or bank-owned. They are currently investigating how their suspect was able to get into the homes and change the locks.

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