Elkhart County Sheriff's Department warns of phone scam targeting the elderly

An 86-year-old woman was recently scammed out of $4,500 from a man claiming to be her grandson.

(Marcello Casal Jr./Agência Brasil)

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 1:59 p.m.

The Elkhart County Sheriff’s Department is warning residents to be on alert for a phone scam that targets older residents.

On Tuesday, July 8, the department took a report from an 86-year-old woman who was scammed out of $4,500 from a man pretending to be her grandson, according to a news release.

The man told her he’d been jailed in Massachusetts and needed bond money. Then, he guided her through the process of putting $4,500 in cash on a prepaid card. 

He then convinced her to give him the numbers from the back of the card so he could redeem the cash.

The sheriff’s department asks that residents share these tips with older family members and neighbors:

  • If you get a similar call from a supposed family member, ask for the contact information of the jail or prison the person is claiming to be held in.
  • Contact the facility to verify whether your family member is actually incarcerated there. 
  • Attempt to call back the person who claims to need help.
  • Call other family members who would know more information about that person and whether they’re truly in need of help.


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