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Bolivar PD warns local residents of recent scam


The Bolivar Police Department was recently made aware of a phone scam targeting local residents.

 This week, a scammer called an elderly female victim and said the victim’s granddaughter was involved in a traffic crash and would be in legal trouble unless the grandmother paid $9,600 in cash to the caller. The scammer told the victim to leave the cash in her mailbox and a bail bondsman would come to pick it up.

A female suspect with a South Carolina phone number then called the victim and claimed to be her granddaughter. A male suspect also talked to the victim and claimed to be the bail bondsman, giving her instructions on how to leave the cash in the mailbox and requesting the victim keep the situation a secret. 

Officers believe the South Carolina phone number was a spoof — or fake — number.

The victim went to the bank and withdrew the money, but her daughter prevented her from leaving it in her mailbox.

“It was very fortunate the victim’s daughter reacted so quickly,” Lt. Roger Barron said.

Barron gave the following tips to help residents avoid falling victim to this type of scam:

  • Don’t send money or give out personal information in response to an unexpected request, whether the request comes via text, phone call or email.
  • Technology makes it easy for scammers to fake caller ID information, so the names and numbers you see aren’t always real.
  • While this scam involved cash, scammers will often ask for wired money, reloadable cards and gift cards. These are all risky forms of currency, making it nearly impossible to get money back. Think twice if someone is asking for payment in these forms.

Officers were able to obtain pictures of one suspect — a white male with dark hair —and a suspect vehicle.

If anyone has any information regarding this scam, or if you receive a similar phone call, please contact the Bolivar Police Department at 417-777-3911.