ELK GROVE (CBS13) - Neighbors in an Elk Grove neighborhood say a prankster is taking funny too far, trying to become a YouTube sensation.
When does a prank become a crime?
"These rule breakers need a lesson. Sam is on the scene," said the prankster in a YouTube video.
With his hidden camera rolling, the prankster, whose goes by "Mischievous Mark" on YouTube, poses as "Sam," a man wearing a yellow hard hat and a vest claiming to be a code-enforcement officer. He says he's on the lookout for eyesores like unsightly tree branches.
"See, the problem is that the tree is too small right here. You see, there's no leaves on it or anything," he says.
Sam eventually reveals it's all in the name of a good prank for his YouTube channel.
"Thanks for being good sports," he tells the homeowners.
But not everyone in this Elk Grove neighborhood is laughing.
"Your best idea is to probably take a hike or I'm gonna call the police," another resident is heard saying on the video.
The angry homeowner you see confronting the prankster invited us into his home to tell us what he says really happened.
"I did see a used receipt book, so that tells me he's legitimately trying to fraud people; and if he can't get away with it or people don't buy it, he tries to play it off as a joke," said William Fagalde.
Fagalde says Sam is out to scam.
"He's not Ashton Kutcher doing that prank show on MTV. This is a gentleman saying he's from a government agency.
So William flipped the camera on Sam, using his own cellphone to record him at the neighbor's house.
"Dude, I told you to get out of my house and now you're over here harassing these people!" said Fagalde.
He says Sam threatened to cite his elderly neighbor who doesn't speak English.
"There's really no purpose. If you're on a college campus and trying to do a social experiment to see how many girls you can kiss, that's one thing, but if you're out in a neighborhood and it's getting late at night, that can invoke fear into someone," said Fagalde.
Elk Grove police showed up to investigate, but say at this point, it's not a crime.
"If he claims to be a government agency of the annual milk society or lawn control, he's being a stupid kid, he needs to be taken outside and spanked," said Ofc. Chris Trimm, an Elk Grove Police Department spokesperson.
While impersonating an official with a fake government agency is not illegal, tricking people for money is.
Fagalde is warning neighbors to be on guard for the prankster who wants to get popular.
Police urge anyone who feels victimized by the prank to come forward. Until then, this prank is not under investigation.
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