I got a call from my grandson, John on Monday morning that was very alarming right from the beginning. His voice was very faint because he was upset but I could tell it was …
I got a call from my grandson, John on Monday morning that was very alarming right from the beginning. His voice was very faint because he was upset but I could tell it was him. The conversation went like this:
Grandma I have something to tell you that I don’t want you to share with anyone else. Oh my God, I thought, John broke up with his girlfriend. He recently got engaged and this was so sad. No, that wasn’t it. I’m hoping you can help me out. I had an accident, smashed up the car and I’m in jail and am being held because of drunk driving.
Oh no, I thought. This was a new development because although he occasionally has a couple of beers, he never gets drunk or at least not until now. He asked if he could borrow bail money which was $8500, and he would get back as soon as his hearing came up which would be soon. He told me he was only allowed to talk briefly and had to get off the phone then but that his public defender would be calling me back with details. Sure enough I got a call immediately from David Bell who gave me the case number, the troop number (the state police were involved) and told me that I should call him as soon as I had the money. To make matters worse John had crashed into another car and the driver was seven months pregnant and had to be taken to the hospital.
Some of you realize that this was a scam but it was only after I called my bank for my balance and then Fidelity to see what funds I had available there that I realized it. One clue was that the highly esteemed Mr. Bell asked me if Josh had ever been in trouble with the law before. My grandson’s name is John, not Josh. I knew John had never had trouble with the law, but I didn’t know about Josh.
And speaking of bells. All of this should have made the bells in my head to ring loud and clear because my friend Yvonne had been successfully scammed years ago. She also was sure she recognized her grandson’s voice and was directed to buy gift cards at a store and just divulge the numbers on the cards so the scammers could collect the money.
When her bank tried to stop her from withdrawing the money she ignored their scammer alert. She revealed what had happened to me and even though she was familiar with the IRS one where they call and say you owe tax money but if you send it right away you will avoid getting fined for lateness. The IRS never calls by phone to collect money. I even was dumbfounded that she didn’t realize that this was also a scam and didn’t ask for my advice ahead of time.
And here I was almost becoming a victim myself. And to make sure it wasn’t a scam, all I had to do was call my grandson, which I did. I never did find out how they were going to get their hands on my money. When my son asked me what I was writing about, he groaned and asked if I would be embarrassed and the answer is yes but maybe I will save a few readers from getting scammed.
And by the way if you get a request to send a few hundred dollars in order to collect a few million that you have won, don’t do that either.
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