Fake NCAA tickets bust in Greenville, 2 arrested

Malik Barnes, Ashley Smith

GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA)- A man and woman are facing charges in relation to fake NCAA tickets sold this past weekend in Greenville for the March Madness games in town.

Greenville police say Malik Che’ Barnes, 21, of New York and Ashley Melinda Smith, 25, of Georgia were both arrested in the incident.

According to the police report, a man said he met with Barnes who was offering four NCAA tournament tickets on Craigslist for $400.

The victim and Barnes met at a restaurant off Congaree Road in Greenville on Sunday. But when the victim went to the Bon Secours Wellness Arena, event staff told him the tickets were fake.

The victim called police, who told him to set up another meeting with Barnes at the same location off Congaree Road.

When Barnes arrived, police were there to confront him. After doing a search, police say they found marijuana in his jacket pocket. The only ID on him was a passport, which police said was fake.

Barnes told police he arrived in a car with his girlfriend, Smith. When police approached her, they say they could smell marijuana. They also found $600 cash in the car.

According to the report, Smith told police they were in Greenville to go shopping at Nordstrom at the mall. There is no Nordstrom in the area.

Police say the victim just wanted his $400 back and that he did not want to press charges. Barnes agreed that they had exchanged the money and the $400 was returned to the victim.

Barnes was charged with forgery $1,000 or less and marijuana possession.

Smith was charged with accessory after the fact and possession of multiple state driver’s licenses.

Both were taken to the Greenville County Detention Center.

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