Alas, this post is more of "a few days ago, I learned... something very unpleasant." But because many people who follow this collection may know Scott Lewis, it's important that I post it here.
Scott Lewis is someone I've known for quite a few years via G+, and he was part of my circle of friends. And ever since this article appeared, accusing him of running elaborate and very nasty confidence games on people, I've been having a lot of conversations where people are saying "wait... this wasn't a one-off?" and giving a lot of details.
A lot of pieces about why various interactions with him seemed odd over the years are suddenly clicking in to place.
At this point, I have very strong reason to believe that not only are all of the allegations in this post true, but they represent a substantial underestimate of what he's been up to. AFAICT, Lewis has been running long cons against people for many years, probably an average of 4-5 per year, taking an average of a few thousand dollars from each victim. And this is not one of those "he didn't know he was being manipulative" situations; it's clearly extremely deliberate and systematic, the work of an experienced con artist who then uses a nasty combination of emotional manipulation, social isolation, and blackmail to keep people from talking about it to either one another or the police.
People I know have been victims of his; other people I know have been attempted targets of his, who are now figuring out just what that weird shit going on was. He may have even recently gotten the idea of trying to target me,
using how hurt he was by these allegations and how he wanted to "open some sort of dialogue" as the opening. Given that most of his stories begin with telling victim #N
how badly hurt he was by victim #N-1
, I'm going to file this under not fucking likely, buddy.
I don't know which, if any, of his cons are likely to be police matters; this sort of thing is notoriously hard to prosecute. But I can offer advice to those who know him: if he's spending a lot of time talking to you, reminding you of how close your relationship is to him and how much you've been helping him deal with how hard everything is in his life, watch out. This guy is not