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The Lincoln County Sheriff's Office is warning area churches to be aware of scammers during the holiday season.
On Sunday, a member of Hull's Grove Baptist Church on West NC Highway 27 was approached by a man who told him he needed money, gasoline and a glucose monitor. The man said he needed money and gasoline for his mother, who was in a Gastonia hospital, and the monitor for a female who was in their car in the church parking lot, deputies said.
A detective who was at the church went outside to speak to the man. The man's wife, his mother-in-law, and four children were also in the vehicle.
They were in western Lincoln County, but claimed they needed the money and gas to go from Lincolnton to Gastonia to get his mother out of the hospital, and the monitor for his mother-in-law who has diabetes, the report states.
The man originally said they lived in Lincolnton, but admitted to living in Gastonia after questioning, officials told WBTV.
No one in the vehicle had a valid driver's license.
The group was taken to the Sheriff's Office in Lincolnton, and the children were turned over to a family member.
During the interview process, the couple told the detective they were at two other churches, including Mt. Zion Baptist Church on Highway 274. Detectives later learned the group had gone to three churches in Cleveland County where they were given money and gasoline, the report states.
Michael Shane Sisk, 36, Lisa Marie Sisk, 29 and Mary Ruth Helton, 48, were charged with one felony count each of attempting to obtain property by false pretense.
All three were taken to the Harven A. Crouse Detention Center and placed under a $2,500 secured bond each.