Close call: Southern Regional Police save Shrewsbury man's $8,500 from scammers
Southern Regional Police investigators were able to stop an elderly Shrewsbury man from losing $8,500 to a common phone scam — but it was a close call.
Police were alerted Monday by a family member that the elderly man received a call from a man claiming to be his nephew and saying he was in jail and needed bail money, according to a news release from Sgt. Darryl Smuck.
The "nephew" gave the elderly man a phone number for his purported attorney, police said.
"The victim stated that he truly believed that the caller was his nephew" and sounded like him, according to the news release.
So the elderly man called the "attorney," who advised him to send $8,500 cash to a UPS Store in New Hampshire, according to police. The "attorney" instructed the Shrewsbury man to use overnight delivery, police said.
He also told the victim that if anyone asked about the cash withdrawal, he should tell them it was for contracting work, police said.
The Shrewsbury man went to a local UPS Store and sent the cash, police said.
The same night, his daughter learned what had happened and called police.
"The officer worked diligently to stop the package from being delivered," the news release states.
A change in shipping was made for the package and although it did make its way to New Hampshire, the officer was contacted after it did and the package was sent back to the victim, police said.
The Southern Regional Police Department is encouraging people to speak with elderly loved ones about these scams, and how to avoid falling victim to them.
— Reach senior crime reporter Liz Evans Scolforo at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.