11 charged with having fake tickets or passes to Taylor Swift concerts in Chicago; 2 more accused of trying to bribe their way in

Taylor Swift and, left to right from top: James Butler, Frederick Choice, Kiaeem Crawford, Eniola Iseyemi, Daniel Jones, Joseph Krush, Samuel Mora, Zion Olivera, Adam Rahman, Richard Williams | YiFeiBot; Chicago Police Department

CHICAGO — Taylor Swift’s three-day run at Soldier Field was a blowout hit, packing Chicago hotel rooms across the city. But police and prosecutors say schemers and scammers were out in force, trying to sneak into the show with phony passes, selling fake tickets to desperate fans, and even bribing a security guard to let them into the show.

Police and court records show eleven adults, all men, are charged with theft stemming from efforts to get into Swift’s concert. At least two of the men are from out of state.

Daniel Jones, 36, was among the first to be arrested outside the stadium last Friday evening. A downstate woman told police she was looking for last-minute tickets online when Jones walked up and offered her a great deal, according to a Chicago Police Department report.

She Venmoed $500 to him, and he texted four tickets in exchange, the report said. Those tickets were promptly rejected at the stadium entrance. The woman found some officers nearby, and they arrested Jones, the report said.

In 2018, Jones was convicted of attempted forgery for selling counterfeit Phil Collins concert tickets to an undercover Chicago cop, according to court records. He’s now charged with misdemeanor theft by deception.

On Sunday evening, Chicago police saw 23-year-old James Butler outside the stadium and realized he matched the description of a man who was wanted for selling counterfeit tickets in the area before an earlier show, prosecutors said.

Butler ran from police, “causing people to flee for their safety,” and eventually slammed into a Chicago cop, knocking them both to the ground, a police report said. The collision allegedly caused Butler to drop an envelope that contained ten counterfeit tickets to Swift’s show. He’s charged with theft of services.

Two men were arrested on Saturday evening after they offered to pay a stadium usher cash if he’d let them enter the show without tickets, according to a CPD arrest report. Samuel Mora, 46, and Joseph Krush, 47, are charged with attempted theft of services.

Richard Williams, 54, of Harrisburg, Pa., “used fake Taylor Swift concert credentials in order to gain access” to Sunday’s show, according to a misdemeanor complaint for theft of services. A police inventory sheet said officers confiscated a “counterfeit Taylor Swift all-access badge.”

Kiaeem Crawford, 32, Frederick Choice, 50, and 25-year-old Eniola Iseyemi are also accused of possessing fake concert credentials at Saturday’s show, according to court records. Iseyemi’s arrest report said he had 12 Taylor Swift pass lanyards, two purple wristbands, and four tickets for a zipline venue on the Las Vegas strip.

Adam Rahman, 30, of Orlando, and two 16-year-old boys are also accused of selling fake tickets outside the stadium over the weekend.

This story was updated on January 30, 2024, to remove the name and photo of an individual whose charges were dropped in October 2023.

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