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Bail for relative scams continue to be an issue for citizens

08/12/2021

On 08-04-2021 at 1900 hours, Wagoner County Lt. B. Noble was dispatched to an address in the Broken Arrow area in reference to a possible Fraud that had occurred.
 
Upon arrival, contact was made with an elderly victim, who stated that on 08-04-2021 at approximately 1330 hours, the victim was contacted on their landline telephone by a person they did not know who spoke with them about a recent event that had occurred in the news. The victim stated that this person, who did not identify themselves, stated that their grandson was in jail because of an incident and that they needed $9000 in cash to bail him out. The victim stated that they felt badly for this person and agreed to help them with the money.
 
A short time later the victim stated that the unknown person sent a taxi to their residence to pick them up. The taxi, described as a white sedan with a taxi emblem on the side (unknown detail), and driven by a male of unknown ethnicity came to transport the victim to a financial institution in Broken Arrow. The victim went inside and withdrew $9000 in cash from their accounts, returned to their home, and waited. Additionally, the elderly victim had to pay the taxi driver $50 for this trip, but they did not get a receipt.
 
At approximately 1500 hours, a black male, thin build, with a goatee driving a dark-colored sedan arrived at the victims residence and requested the money, which the victim gave to him. The victim believed this man's name was "Charlie” but did not have any other information. The victim stated they felt like they had done something wrong and called a family member. The elderly victim was not able to provide an intelligible phone number for any of the people they spoke to.
 
Wagoner County Sheriff Chris Elliott stated “The scam is not new, typically the victim generally gets a call from someone either claiming to be a relative or claiming to be an attorney representing a relative. The relative is in jail, and they ask for the victim to wire bail money. Besides phone calls, victims have also received the messages via text and email. Sometimes one person calls claiming to be the relative, followed by another caller playing the role of a lawyer or bail bondsman.”
 
Sheriff Elliott continued “The sum requested typically ranges from $1,500 to $5,000 but can be much higher. The scammer demands the money in a wire transfer or re-loadable debit cards, like Green Dot MoneyPak cards. It is worth noting that the victim is 90 years old and appeared to be very confused by this situation. The victim did not appear to be able to fully comprehend the gravity of this situation and therefore became a victim of a scam.”


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