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Sheriff also warns consumers about virus-related scams

By Miriam Raftery

March 18, 2020 (San Diego)—The San Diego Sheriff's department has arrested eight local people for selling hoarded toilet paper, cleaning supplies, hygiene products and protective equipment at price-gouging rates. The suspects, who posted the items for sale online, could be fined up to $10,000 and imprisoned.

It is illegal to price gouge during an emergency. After the state emergency declaration due to COVID-19, when consumers found store shelves emptied of much-needed supplies, deputies began checking out online websites. They found local residents offering items at up to 20 times higher than normal. 

Plain-clothes deputies from the Fallbrook station arranged to meet and buy the excessively priced goods, then arrested the suspects including individuals from unicorporated El Cajon, Escondido, Poway, San Diego, San Marcos, Rainbow, and Vista.

The eight people arrested, who were cited and released pending trial, are:

Dale Gottschalk (10/27/1966) - unincorporated El Cajon

David Gold (04/21/1966) - Escondido

David Noriani (06/21/1984) – San Diego

Tony Dai Ta (05/08/1966) - Poway

Chasity Lynn Long-Ross (12/12/1974) – San Marcos

Richard McCake Simpson (02/11/1973) – Vista

Spencer Ryan Silva (08/11/1993) – Escondido

Eric Marc Duran (06/20/1961) – Rainbow

“During this pandemic, scammers are trying to take advantage of the misinformation and fear surrounding the public health crisis. Be aware of the COVID-19 scams circulating across the country,” says Lieutenant Arnold Aldana.

 Coronavirus cure? Not so fast. There are currently no products known to treat or cure coronavirus  Allow beware of door to door scammers offering fake decontamination or coronavirus testing services.

Don’t be conned by scammers urging people to invest in new stocks related to the disease.Also watch out for deceptive online ads and malicious email campaign, such as unsolicited medical advisories with links or attachments, as well as phone calls or emails asking for donations, your social security number, banking information or credit card number

For resources on how to avoid becoming a victim, visit You can report price-gouging to the Sheriff, the District Attorney, or the California Attorney General’s offices.




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"Sheriff Busts Price-Gouging Hoarders" during Coronavirus Crisis

"Be aware of the COVID-19 scams circulating across the country," says Lieutenant Arnold Aldana. The eight local people arrested by the San Diego Sheriff's Department seems to point at the recent stolen truck in North Carolina that 18,000 pounds of toilet paper were dicovered in. See the attached picture here.


I am sure that a number of people here in California are distressed from going into stores looking to purchase toilet paper, and there are none to be had. Just in the last week here in Lancaster I went into Albertson's, Walmart, CVS and a couple of other stores looking to purchase toilet paper and there were none. Those arrested in the San Diego are should be made aware of how there price-gouging is impacting the community, as well as those that stole the truck in North Carolina with the 18,000 pounds of toilet paper in the back. It seems that some people will do anything to take advantage of a medical and humanity crisis, including Senators selling their stocks as indicated here.