TOWN OF NEWBURGH – A local grandmother is out about $7,000 this holiday season after a fraudulent call claiming her granddaughter was in trouble.
The caller claimed to be a police official in the Dominican Republic, and stated that her granddaughter had been injured in an accident and arrested, a bulletin from Town of Newburgh Police Chief Michael Clancy said, warning residents about the scam. The caller stated that “restitution for damages had to be made before the granddaughter could be released,” police said.
The grandmother was told to buy iTunes gift cards totaling $7,000. She complied, going to several large chain stores and buying 14 cards each loaded with $500. The victim gave the caller the card numbers via telephone.
The gift cards were spent, police said. The call may have been made from Quebec, and the investigation is ongoing.
The Town of Newburgh police department cautions residents to be wary of calls reporting an emergency situation requiring immediate cash transfers, purchase of MoneyGrams, gift cards, etc. Police warn residents not to release financial information to suspicious callers, and to report the calls to law enforcement.