Officials warn about scam targeting the elderly, pretending to b - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Officials warn about scam targeting the elderly, pretending to be grandchild in need

SHALLOTTE, NC (WECT) – The Shallotte Police Department is warning residents to be on the look-out for potential scam artists who are targeting the elderly in the community.

According to Captain Scott Branning, this is a scam they've seen before, but now it seems to be growing.

Officials say the scam targets the elderly by claiming to be a distressed grandchild. It begins with a phone call. From there, the caller claims to be a grandchild who lives out of state, saying they are in jail, typically because of a car accident of some sort.

If asked why their voice sounds different, the caller reportedly tells the potential victim they have a cold.

Officials say the caller then asks the grandparent to send money to bond them out of jail, instructing the victim to call a bondsman and are given a number or a second person calls back pretending to be the bondsman.

Officials say the scam puts pressure on the victims and creates a sense of urgency by playing on the emotions of the elderly victim.

Right now, officials aren't sure how the scammers get information about the victims' grandchildren.

The Shallotte Police Department is urging residents not to send money or give out personal information without knowing exactly who is calling.

If you think you have been a victim of a scam, you are asked to call law enforcement as soon as possible. The Shallotte Police Dept. can be reached at 910 754-6008910 754-6008.

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