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BCSO Blotter: Scammer tricks grandmother to send money

From Bryan County Sheriff’s Office reports:

A Richmond Hill woman reported March 1 that she was the victim of a particularly cruel scam. The woman said she got a phone call from a Linden City, N.J. number, with the caller telling her he was her grandson and had been in a bad accident.

“The male stated he was taken to jail and his lawyer would call her immediately,” the report said, noting the woman “used her grandson’s name at that time without thinking because she was upset that he was possibly in an accident and in jail.”

The woman said she got a call from a man minutes later, and he identified himself as an attorney for her grandson. The man told her that her grandson was involved in a wreck Feb. 27 and was being charged with DUI. He also told her that her grandson had suffered from injuries, and while he was being taken to a hospital, his bond was set for $7,200.

The woman told the man pretending to be her grandson’s lawyer that she couldn’t afford that amount on short notice and the man said the bail bondsman would take half, or $3,700.

“(The grandmother) stated she transferred funds from her credit card to her checking account, and went immediately to her bank in Richmond Hill to withdraw that amount. The man had given her instructions on how to package the money and where to send it.“ (The grandmother) stated as instructed she purchased a magazine and placed individual amounts of money throughout the magazine and then put the magazine in a manila folder. (The caller) instructed her to address the package priority mail,” the report said.

The woman then called and gave the man the tracking number, and he said he’d “inform her of the outcome of the arrangement.”

He did, telling her “he had bad news and good news,” and “the second driver in the accident was pregnant and had miscarried due to the accident,” so her grandson’s “bail had doubled because he is being charged with vehicular homicide.”

The man then asked her to send the other $3,700, and to call him when she sent it. The woman said “she was confused and tried to call the number back but no one answered.”

So, the woman then called her grandson’s wife asked if he was OK, and was told he was “fine and would be home in a few minutes for lunch.”

Her grandson called her when he got home and, after she questioned him about the accident, told her she’d been scammed. Authorities are investigating.

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