Three men were taken into custody by Oak Lawn Police when a man attempting to get even with a scammer apparently used his concealed firearms as a form of intimidation, resulting in the men facing a possible charge of armed robbery.
On January 12, 2016, police were called to the McDonald’s restaurant located at 9128 S Cicero Ave for a deceptive practice incident in progress. When officers arrived, they found four men involved in the incident. The man who called the police, Phillip Gazzola, of Lisle, complained that Natavis McGee, of Calumet City, had scammed him out of $1,100 a week prior, and was attempting to do so again.
Gazzola explained that a week earlier he had answered an ad on Craigslist. The ad listed a set of four tickets to a Bruce Springsteen concert. Gazzola paid for the tickets, but later came to find out that the tickets he purchased were fraudulent.
Gazzola found that the same individual had more listings, so he attempted to purchase additional tickets, with the thought of catching the seller in the act. The ruse was unsuccessful, as the seller identified Gazzola’s account.
Gazzola then asked his future son-in-law, Emmanuel Williams, of Darien, to contact the seller. Williams arranged to meet the seller at the McDonald’s in order to complete the transaction. Gazzola, Williams, and Williams’ former co-worker, Keyon Dunagan, of Woodridge, waited at the McDonald’s until the seller arrived at approximately 11 a.m.
When confronted by Gazzola, Williams, and Dunagan about a scam, McGee, the seller, claimed that he had no knowledge of any prior transaction. McGee claimed that he was only there to collect money for the tickets he had brought with him.
Williams and Dunagan then held McGee in his chair as they went through his pockets, removing cash and placing it on the table. Gazzola took the money and pocketed it.
Gazzola, who has a concealed carry permit, brought two firearms to the meeting. He admitted to police that he had shown a gun to McGee in an attempt to “scare the piss out of the guy” who sold him fake tickets.
McGee told police that he did not sell Gazzola any tickets. Gazzola later admitted he wasn’t 100% sure that McGee was the same person who had sold him tickets before. McGee said he was only there as a favor for a friend, a man he knows only as “Rob from the hood.”
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office later interviewed McGee, but did not charge anyone involved. McGee apparently declared that he would not go to court as a witness for the prosecution.