Police: Owen Wilson Look-Alike Busted
Oak Park business official credits viral media for spotlighting local scam.
Police have arrested a man they say is the coupon fraudster described as an Owen Wilson look-alike "without the crooked nose."
Richard Marciss, 38, of Lyons, was charged with theft and attempted theft after he was identified as the con man trading phony coupons for real discounts at Oak Park stores, police said.
"With that description, everyone was on the lookout," said Pat Zubak, director of the Downtown Oak Park business association.
Zubak said she was skeptical of the initial description — and the way it rocketed around the Web, appearing locally on Gapers Block and nationally on Huffington Post, among other sites — but the odd description helped raise awareness of the local scam.
"It seemed like everywhere I went around town, people knew about it," she said.
In a Jan. 15 incident at the Lake Theatre, police said Marciss traded in photocopied certificates depicting $10 coupons later determined to be fakes, police said.
Witnesses told police the man looked like "Owen Wilson without the crooked nose."
At least four other Oak Park businesses reported receiving the fake coupons, which are part of a popular Downtown Oak Park holiday promotion where shoppers are encouraged to make purchases from local stores, then redeem those receipts for up to $50 in coupons at other local businesses.