Lafayette orders fortune teller to shut down
Bob Segall/13 Investigates
Lafayette - A business at the center of an Eyewitness News investigation has been ordered to shut down.
When 13 Investigates tried to ask Patricia Johns questions, she didn't seem to be expecting our crew. But she probably should have. After all, she says she's a psychic.
Johns does business inside a Lafayette home, and on the internet where she claims she's the real thing: a master psychic, clairvoyant and life coach. Johns says she can unveil the past, present and future, remove dark forces and reunite loved ones.
But some of her former clients disagree.
"To me it's a scam," said Georgia Black.
Black went to see the psychic for advice after her husband died. She says the fortune teller claimed evil spirits were coming after her and her children and eventually, Georgia says she was cheated out of $125,000.
"You're vulnerable. You're trying to find answers and you're hoping somebody somewhere can help you. She was just there to take my money. Easy money for her," said Black.
Other clients share the same story.
"I just can't believe that I let somebody take advantage of me like this," said another woman who lost $20,000 to Johns.
Some women - who do not want to share their identity - say the psychic charged them tens of thousands of dollars to mend broken relationships but then failed to deliver.
"None of it. None of it was true. Everything was a lie," said another woman.
"She kept telling me that everything was going to be OK and it was going to work out, and it never did. And all she did was profit off of my pain and suffering."
Police don't like what's been happening but they told 13 Investigates there's little they can do.
"We have found nothing that Patricia Johns has done that specifically violates any criminal code that Indiana has," said Det. B.T. Brown, Lafayette Police.
But the city of Lafayette has a city code that prohibits fortune-tellers and clairvoyants from doing business there.
Just one day after we aired our story, the city attorney sent a letter to Patricia Johns. It orders her to immediately cease and desist her business and threatening a fine of $1000 per day if she fails to comply.
The fortune teller did not want to talk with Eyewitness News about the city's letter. But a few minutes after our phone call, Johns posted new information on her website. It says she is now available for psychic readings only by phone and is not meeting clients in-person. The sign in her window is now turned off.
Now that this order has been issued, the city attorney's office and police department tell me they'll be enforcing it. They say investigators will be monitoring the psychic's business and her website over the next few months to see if she continues to violate the city's rules.