Impersonating a Fisherman’s Wharf parking lot attendant has apparently become a rabid addiction for George Anderson.
The 50-year-old serial con artist who’s made plenty of headlines for duping parkers was reportedly arrested again in February only four days after being released from jail for three previous offenses.
Anderson and at least one other scammer have been repeatedly busted for taking money from unwitting drivers in exchange for a fake receipt. When Anderson was arrested Jan. 5, police said he told them he had recently been the subject of a San Francisco Chronicle story about parking lot scams.
On Jan. 28, Anderson pleaded guilty to incidents on Jan. 5, Dec. 1 and June 16 as part of a deal with the judge, Assistant District Attorney Alex Bastian said.
While prosecutors offered Anderson a deal that included a year in County Jail, Bastian said, the judge’s proposal was 60 days.
Anderson took the 60-day deal and was released Feb. 20 with three years of probation and on the condition that he stay away from the parking lot. Four days later, authorities said, Anderson apparently fell off the wagon and went back.
About 12:30 p.m. Feb. 24, an officer said she spotted Anderson scamming a driver at Bay and Kearny streets.
The driver had just paid $20 for a $40 parking space to a man “known to all Central Station police officers” as a con artist, according to police and court documents.
In an attempt to evade the officer, Anderson reportedly took off his red hat and ducked behind a van. But he was immediately arrested, police said, and he again admitted to the scam.
Though the thefts are small, Central Police Station Capt. Garret Tom said officers find it “very frustrating” that crooks like Anderson are let out of jail so easily, particularly after multiple offenses.
Another parking lot scammer, Fofana Mbemba, reportedly has a rap sheet that is a dozen pages long.
“This criminal justice system is definitely flawed,” Tom said. “It’s just a revolving door.”
Anderson was arraigned Thursday in connection with the Feb. 24 incident, Bastian said. His bail was set at $50,000 and he remains in custody on a probation hold.
Prosecutors said they will be pushing for a much stiffer sentence this time around.