Sweepstakes and lottery scams are simple and one that many people are familiar with. They capitalize on the notion that “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Here, scammers inform their mark they have won a lottery or sweepstakes of some kind and need to make some sort of payment to unlock the supposed prize.
Often, seniors will be sent a check that they can deposit in their bank account, knowing that while it shows up in their account immediately, it will take a few days before the (fake) check is rejected. During that time, the criminals will quickly collect money for supposed fees or taxes on the prize, which they pocket while the victim has the “prize money” removed from his or her account as soon as the check bounces.
With lottery scams, a senior’s savings are not eroded all at once. Once they take the bait and send some money in, they’re put on the sucker list. That marks them to receive future calls or solicitations about other alleged lottery winnings. It’s known as a “reload scam,” and it can play out in areas other than just fake lottery winnings.
If you suspect you’ve been the victim of a scam, don’t be afraid or embarrassed to talk about it with someone you trust. You are not alone, and there are people who can help. Doing nothing could only make it worse.
Keep handy the phone numbers and resources you can turn to, including the local police, your bank (if money has been taken from your accounts) and adult protective services. To obtain the Eldercare Locator, a government-sponsored national resource line call 1-800-677-1116 or visit https://eldercare.acl.gov.
May 9. Trespass: The caller states someone has been knocking on the windows for the past hour and they would like them issued a trespass order at 12:29 p.m. in the 600 block of Avenue B.
Traffic Hazard: The contractor evidently forgot the large metal plates used in a previous repair at 9:51 a.m. in the 500 block of Lake Superior Lane.
Thought for the day: I’m not sure I would wait an hour to report someone knocking on my windows at that time of night.
May 10. Civil: The caller states that an item was taken a month ago and they have suspect information at 3:54 p.m. in the 700 block of Canyon Road.
Suspicious: The caller states that an unfamiliar vehicle has been parked nearby for an extended period of time at 1:59 p.m. in the 1200 Corral Road.
Thought for the day: If you enter into an agreement with someone and they do not fulfill their part of the contract with payment this is a civil issue and small claims court is the correct place to go for restitution.
May 11. Threats: The caller states a subject from a nearby residence has been attempting to gain entry after some alarming conversation at 9:39 a.m. in the 700 block of Capri Drive.
Domestic: Neighbors report the sounds of yelling and glass breaking at 5:36 p.m. in the 700 block of Fifth Street.
Thought for the day: This is the absolute perfect example of a 911 call. The offense is happening now and response is needed immediately.
May 12. Hit and run: The damage is substantial but the white Jeep Wrangler seems to have disappeared at 12:25 a.m. in the 700 block of Nevada Way.
Suspicious: The property owner states there are stakes in the ground directing people where to park and they have not authorized any of it at 3:24 p.m. in the 1300 block of Wyoming Street.
Thought for the day: It appears someone decided vacant property is a perfect place for party parking from the night before.
May 13. Welfare check: The caller believes the bike rider is inebriated and has fallen off his ride at 6:43 p.m. in the 500 block of Utah Street.
DUI with accident: If you are too intoxicated to drive it might be a hint that walking away from the accident isn’t going to work well at 6:39 a.m. in the 900 block of Nevada Way.
Thought for the day: The casa was close but just not close enough.
May 14. Fight: The road rage incident escalates when the parties stop and attempt to settle the dispute with fists at 1:28 p.m. in the 700 block of Canyon Road.
Noise: The neighbors report sounds of yelling being drowned out by music at 9:31 p.m. in the 1300 block of Darlene Way.
Thought for the day: If the movie is loud enough that the neighbors think there’s a domestic going on, it’s too loud.
May 15. Suspicious: The caller states there is a subject rolling around in the grass with something covering his head at 6:35 a.m. in the area of Sixth Street and Avenue B.
Temporary protective orders: Protective orders are ready for service at 6:22 a.m. in the 1300 block of Wyoming Street.
Thought for the day: We have several individuals in our community with mental illness who have very individual ways of expressing themselves and it can appear to be a need for assistance.
Call of the week: Traffic: The routine traffic stop reveals a clown car full of wanted people and the responsible agencies can’t decide if they have officers to send for pick up or not. In the end, they all walk away with citations from our jurisdiction and warnings to take care of their obligations in the valley at 2:55 p.m. May 14 in the area of mile marker 7 on Interstate 11.
Tina Ransom is a dispatcher with Boulder City Police Department. She is coordinator of the Boulder City Citizen’s Academy.