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Attorney General sending investigators to monitor possible price gouging

TOLEDO, OH (Toledo News Now) -

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says his office is actively monitoring possible price gouging complaints regarding bottled water as a result of Toledo's water crisis.

"We have seen the best of many Ohioans who have generously helped those needing water in the Toledo area, but we also have heard allegations of possible price gouging in the area," Attorney General DeWine said. "We are actively monitoring complaints related to the Toledo water crisis. Those who think they are overpaying for water should contact the Ohio Attorney General's Office immediately and provide information about where the water was being sold and the price paid."

The Ohio Attorney General's Office is sending representatives to monitor water prices in the Toledo area.

Meanwhile, many customers were outraged to see prices skyrocketing at some stores. They say they saw cases of water selling for as much as $27.

"I don't know, but they should be shut down," said Misty Fincher, an east Toledo resident. "The whole city was in crisis and they took advantage of us."

After reports that two local Stop and Gos were price gouging, Toledo News Now talked to store management. 

"We did sell the water at the beginning for $14.99," said Tom Ridi from management. "The president of the company [was] out of town, overseas. As soon as he realized the issue, he emailed us back [saying], "Sell the water at cost." And we did."

Ridi justified the high prices due to supply and demand. 

Toledo Police urge anyone who experienced these issues to contact the Attorney General's Office

"We're going to assist them as far as providing info to them, if we had some vendors in the community not acting in good faith," said TPD Sgt. Joe Heffernan. 

Laws that address price gouging vary from state to state. While Ohio does not have a statute that deals directly with price gouging, state law bans unconscionable sales practices.

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