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Police Warn of Friendship Heights Phone Scam

By Aaron Kraut

Tuesday - 11/20/2012, 3:50pm  ET

Montgomery County Police say someone is calling mostly elderly residents in Friendship Heights and pretending to be their grandchild to scam them out of money.

Since mid-October, the suspect or suspects have made out with $2,000 by claiming they have been arrested in an accident in Mexico of Canada and need money, police said.

The caller then has told the victims not to tell the “grandchild’s” mother or father, police said.

In two cases, the victim has deposited money in a bank account given by the caller. Police say there have been five of these incidents.

From the press release:

Based on the above incidents, police are reminding all residents to verify the identity of anyone who contacts them via telephone.  Obtain a telephone number from the caller, and tell the caller that you will return his or her call.  Do not provide bank account numbers over the phone, and do not send money to anyone you do not know.  Most importantly, if you feel that you have been the victim of a scam, contact police.  Your report to the police is oftentimes the only way that police know that such incidents are occurring.

Late last month, police say a scam artist dressed in a construction vest and hard hat distracted an elderly Bethesda resident while his partner stole jewelry from her home.