By Caryn Robbins
As BWW reported last month, as tickets to the hit show Hamilton continue to be one of the hottest commodities on Broadway, counterfeit tickets to the critically acclaimed hip-hop musical are unfortunately becoming more and more prevalent. However according to the New York Post, one scammed ticket buyer was determined not to let a fraudulent seller get off scot free.
Last spring, Danielle Posner purchased two tickets to the February 19, 2016 performance of HAMILTON on Craigslist. “I really thought they were legit,” explained the 29-year-old special-ed teacher. “I go to a show once a month and the tickets looked dead on.”
Unfortunately, when she called Ticketmaster to check the event codes listed on the tickets, she learned that they were invalid. Disappointed and extremely outraged, Posner stormed into the 33rd Precinct in Washington Heights to register her complaint, only to be told that the station had higher priority cases to deal with, including murders. As any true theater fan would have responded, she told them, “Well, he murdered my dream of going to Hamilton.”
She went on to present full documentation of the purchase, including printouts of the Craigslist ad, the fake tickets themselves and photos of the text conversation with the scammer in question.
In addition, she informed the cops that she had already set up a sting operation by having her boyfriend answer an ad placed by the same Craigslist seller and scheduling a ticket-pickup meeting for that very afternoon. Ten anti-crime officers agreed to accompany her to the appointed spot, the corner of West 168th Street and Broadway. A plain clothes police officer posed as Posner’s boyfriend while the rest of the team waited in four unmarked cars. Once Posner positively identified the crook to the officers and cash and tickets were exchanged with the undercover agent, the alleged counterfeiter was put in handcuffs. He was later charged with four counts of possession of a forged instrument, petit larceny and misapplication of property.
“I was so happy,” shared a relieved Posner. “Losing $350 to get somebody who has probably done this to so many people was worth it.”
According to a representative at the Richard Rodgers Theatre, home of HAMILTON, counterfeit tickets have been showing up “at least five times a week.” He added that the majority of them were sold on Craigslist.
Back in October, Hamilton creator and star Lin-Manuel Miranda took to Twitter to caution ticket buyers about the fake ticket sellers. “I have friends who have been scammed on Craig and his so-called List,” Miranda warned. “Don’t buy Hamilton tickets off there please.”