Scammers or con artists are always dreaming up new ways of getting you to turn over your hard-earned money. One of the latest scams involves showing up to a person’s house, usually someone elderly, and posing as a police officer, telling them a relative was involved in a fatal car crash.
That kind of shocking news is enough to get the victim worked up, who then is relieved to learn their relative, usually a child or grandchild, didn’t die in the crash. However, there’s a catch: their loved one has supposedly been arrested and is being held in jail. That’s when the full trap is sprung as the scammer asks for the money so the jailed relative can be set free.
Under normal circumstances, a person wouldn’t fall for this scheme in a million years. But, when first presented with shocking information which at first sounds like a relative might have died violently, presented by someone posing as an authority figure, the victim is primed to hand over whatever is necessary to help the relatively supposedly in distress.
We’ve seen this scam before but it recently surfaced again, this time in Michigan, as covered by WJBK. Sadly, the elderly woman who was targeted went to the bank and withdrew the “bail money” for the scammer who showed up at her house to pick up the cash in person.
The Monroe County Sheriff’s Office has identified the scammer in this case as Juan Romero of Berwyn, Illinois. However, he’s still on the run with authorities asking the public for help finding him. That means the elderly woman he targeted is still missing her money, which we know is between $1,000 and $20,000 thanks to criminal charges filed against Romero.
Just remember, police will never show up at your house asking for money, either cash or using a card reader. Legitimate bail bondsmen don’t even do that. If you suspect someone isn’t who they say they are, call your local law enforcement and ask them to confirm. Any legitimate cop will appreciate your doing so.