GLENDALE, Ariz. - You can't always trust people online. One Glendale woman learned that the hard way.
Ashley booked a party bus for her husband's surprise birthday party, but it turned out she was the one getting surprised.
She found an advertisement on Craigslist that included links to a Facebook account for a party bus service.
"I told him it was a surprise birthday party, I wanted the bus here at this time," she said. "He sent me some pictures of the bus and the same pictures on this Facebook link. And this guy has reviews and all this kind of stuff."
"This looks legitimate," she thought.
The Facebook page was, but the man, known to her only as "Carlos," was not.
She paid him $400 in cash and signed her name, receiving a receipt in her email and believing everything was set to go, until the night of the party.
"Everyone said, 'Ashley, there's no party bus, there's no party bus,'" she said.
She called "Carlos" and he told her he'd be there in 15 minutes, but she knew she'd been scammed.
"Oh, I was livid," she said. "I am smarter than that."
The real business "Carlos" used is RedStar Executive Transportation, and representatives for the company said they have no idea who he is and nobody named "Carlos" works there.
That receipt Ashley received may have held some clues that this was a scam, but it was already too late.
The business name is different, the email address is fake and the street address does not match up.
"Carlos" kept up the charade for some time, though.
"He keeps, like, interacting with me, though," she said, narrating the night. "He's all acting out of breath: 'I'm so sorry.' And he's coming, and he's at this location, he didn't know. And the next thing I know, we're trying to call the phone numbers and they're just off."
Those numbers are still disconnected.
Ashley said she's going to the police, but she's not expecting to get her money back.