Legit or counterfeit? One Seahawks fan's warning against ticket rip-offs

by: Gary Horcher Updated:

It may be impossible to tell if a ticket is counterfeit just by looking at it.

With high hopes of adding to the 12th man’s chaotic--crashing chorus Thursday night, former season ticket holder, Ed Patterson, was determined to score a good ticket by shopping around online. Patterson says he’s a wily veteran of negotiating on Craiglist.

“There's an art to finding the tickets,” Patterson told KIRO 7. “That's kind of what I learned by dealing online over the last three years."

On Monday, Patterson scored what he calls a “very expensive lesson.” A legitimate-looking ticket he bought for $220 turned out to be counterfeit.

According to online ticket aggregators TiqIQ and StubHub, this Thursday’s Seahawks-Packers tilt is by far the most expensive resold ticket in all of sports. The cheapest ticket on StubHub Monday night was $232 for a single standing-room only space, while the most expensive was $4,200. The average ticket price online is more than $570.

Patterson shopped StubHub and the Seahawks official NFL ticket exchange; but among the thousand ticket offers on Craigslist, he said one seller's offer stood out with a lower price.

“He wanted $250. I offered him $220 and he said that was fine," Patterson said.

Patterson says he met the well-dressed seller, who didn’t seem the least bit suspicious. At first glance, the ticket seemed real.

“When I looked closer, I guess the graphics on it were a little off,” Patterson said, “But it wasn't so off to make me super suspicious."

But Patterson said some inconsistencies on the rear of the ticket made him curious enough to call the Seahawks’ ticket office, and he told a representative the account and bar code numbers.

"As soon as I did that, she recognized there was a problem right away,” he said. “She told me to make a police report and otherwise, I'm screwed."

Patterson called the seller right back, to demand his money. “He hung up the phone,” he said.

The seller hung up again when KIRO 7 called him, asking for an explanation. Patterson put a Craigslist ad together himself, warning Seahawks fans not to do business with the seller. He is also reporting the incident to police, hoping they can intercept future bogus transactions.

He says he’s hoping the 12th Man will learn from his costly mistake, and the seller will receive his message:  “You're a crook and a thief,” he said.