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Homeless man poses as parking attendant downtown

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OKLAHOMA CITY -- A homeless man in Oklahoma City is arrested for trying to scam people looking for parking.

Police said the suspect has repeatedly posed as a parking attendant.

In fact, the suspect allegedly admitted to police this isn't the first time he's pretended to be a parking lot employee to scam people.

That's why police said there's a lesson everyone can learn.

"I kinda get scared driving around here, so I don't come to downtown too often," Michelle Johnson said.

Still, on this visit downtown Wednesday, Michelle plugged the machine in the parking lot at Hudson and Kerr.

That's where police arrested Matthew Allen for falsely posing as a parking attendant last week.

"The pay machines can be a pain but they're more trusty than some people out there I guess," Johnson said.

Police said this isn't the first time the suspect has been caught in the act.

"They've had a number of problems with the same man posing as parking attendants and trying to get money from people," Oklahoma City Police Sgt. Jennifer Wardlow said.

For their part, police offer some simple advice for anyone paying for a parking spot downtown.

"Be careful who you give your money to when you park," Wardlow said.

"It's really sad when you can't trust people," Johnson said.

According to the police report, Allen admitted "He commits these crimes in the parking lots to support his drug habit."

Police said if you are parking downtown and you see someone suspicious, you can always call police to check them out.

It's better to be safe than sorry.

In this case, the suspect is charged with trespassing.