For more than 20 years, Richard Scott Smith wooed unsuspecting women, played the perfect partner, then took off – with their bank accounts drained.
Tracy. Ellen. Sabrina. Jean. Rachel. Jennifer. More than one Heather.
Their stories are shared in Love Fraud, a four-part docuseries arriving on Stan this week. The series is like Catfish meets Dirty John, documenting Smith’s decades of fraud and conning women, most in their 40s or 50s, out of their life savings along with their dignity and confidence.
Watch the trailer for Love Fraud. Post continues below video.
There are at least 10 women across the United States’ midwest with the same story of financial fraud, personal deceit and in at least one case, bigamy.
Smith would perform different roles for each woman. Sometimes, he was a passionate Christian and sometimes he was an atheist. He would change his name or backstory, and claim he was about to come into millions of dollars due to a medical malpractice lawsuit.
“Dating in your 40s sucks,” declares Tracy, a Kansas City single parent in the series’ opening scene. “It seems like your only choice is to go online to meet somebody.”
Tracy met Smith, now 48, online. He went by Mickey at that point, and immediately their relationship felt different.
He was doting, telling her he loved her quickly and couldn’t stand to be away from her. They moved in together and got engaged.
Then he combined their bank accounts, drained her savings and took off.
Googling his name brings up a website about ‘scottthecrooksmith’. It was started by another of his former wives, Lisa Lenton, who married Smith in April 2012 and thankfully had the foresight of freezing her bank accounts before leaving him a few months later.