Detectives are searching for additional victims of a woman who ran a psychic reading business in Culver City, where she allegedly preyed on vulnerable people, telling them they were cursed to scam them out of money.
Leslie Lee, 42, was arrested on suspicion of grand theft involving at least three victims, the Los Angeles Police Department said in a Monday news release.
She used rituals involving eggs to determine the “extent of the curse” the victims supposedly had, then asked for hefty sums of money for “curse removal work,” according to the release.
Lee promised to ultimately return the money, but she never did, investigators said.
One of the cases involves a Hollywood woman Lee met years ago. The psychic gained her trust over the course of eight years, and convinced her she was afflicted with negative energy that was adversely impacting her life, LAPD said.
Officials did not name Lee’s business. But all three reviews on a Yelp page for Culver City Psychic name a Leslie or Leslie Lee.
Police say similar ruses — charging high sums to use eggs and bananas to probe a supposed curse — are fairly common against emotionally and physically vulnerable individuals. Victims tend to be reluctant to report what’s happened out of embarrassment and fear of what their loved ones may think, officials said.
Lee was booked into jail last Monday, March 2, and released on $45,000 bond later the same day. She’s scheduled to appear in court March 23, inmate records show.
Anyone who believes they’ve been victimized or is aware of similar scams can contact LAPD Detective Patrick Aluotto at 213-972-2929 or email@example.com. Anonymous tips can be submitted via 800-222-8477 or www.lacrimestoppers.org.