Latta Police Chief Warning Public About Scams
By Betsy Finklea
Latta Police Chief Crystal Moore is warning the public about scams that have surfaced and are becoming more rampant in the area.
One resident of Latta was contacted by telephone, according to a report by PFC Andy Britt and Sgt. Derrick Cartwright. The resident was told that he had won $5.5 million from Publishers Clearing House and that they would be there in a couple of days with a new Mercedes as a bonus. The resident was told that all he had to do was get a money card with $500 on it and call him with the number on the back of it. The resident called Publishers Clearing House who said it was not them and that it must be a scam. The scammer then contacted the resident again, said he was in the area with his new car, and wanted the number from the card.
A second resident reported Wednesday to Chief Moore that she received a check in the mail from the National Lottery that stated she had won a prize because she shopped at one of the following: Wal-Mart, Sears, Walgreens, Kmart, Costco, Staples, Home Depot, Office Depot, etc. It says that she was entered into a sweepstakes because of this and was selected as the winner and that is how she received the check.
Enclosed with the check was a letter that said she would receive a second check in the amount of $131,250 in a FedEx package with more instructions within 24-48 hours. It gives her phone numbers to call and an e-mail address.
She took the $3,750 check to Wal-Mart to cash it, and they told her it was a scam and to report it to the police department.
Law enforcement advises the public to hang up and ignore these types of calls and to ignore letters that state that they have won prizes or include checks. Chief Moore said that citizens should not respond to any phone calls, letters or checks from organizations that they do not know. She also said that citizens should not respond the e-mails from people they do not know because they can hack your computer, put viruses on your computer, and steal your information.
If you have any questions about a letter, check, or call that you have received, check with your local police department or the Sheriff’s Office before responding.