Gary Thompson Pretends to Be Handicapped, Earns $100K a Year Panhandling

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Perhaps the definition of a dirtbag, Gary Thompson earns six figures by panhandling ... all while pretending to be mentally and physically handicapped.

The Lexington, Ky., man rolls around in wheelchair, as he falsely claims - in a false speech impediment - he has problems walking without it.

It's all a ruse to bilk unsuspecting good Samaritans.

Thompson was awarded a whopping $2.4 million in a lawsuit following a 1993 motorcycle accident, but he claims he and his family spent all of the money.

He tells his sob story to strangers on the street to elicit donations, and he bragged to LEX 18 TV that he’s actually quite adept at conning people.

“I appreciate you guys busting me,” he told the reporter. “Yeah, I’m really good at it, really good. I clear about $100,000 dollars a year doing this."

"Anything from $60,000 to $100,000 dollars a year.”

Thompson has a college degree in speech pathology, which he said gave him the skills to effectively imitate a mentally challenged person.

Always good to see people apply their education vocationally.

"It just helps to be mentally handicapped too,” he admits.

One woman who gave Thompson - who was busted by the TV station and faces criminal charges - told LEX 18 that she was shocked by his scam.

“He got me! I don’t make that much money, but I reached into my pocket, and gave him everything I had. Six dollars at the time,” Judy McKinney said.