Police Alert Elderly To Lottery Scam With Possible Local Connections
GREENSBURG (KDKA) — Lottery scams are not uncommon, but they typically involve a scam artist in another country or at least another state.
What makes this latest local case unusual is that a person involved in the scam actually showed up at the victim’s house. KDKA is hiding the victim’s identity for her own safety.
The 91-year-old victim answered her phone last Thursday and was told by the man on the other end that she had won a contest.
“He told me I had won a large amount of money,” the victim said.
All she had to do was get a money card from Wal-Mart worth several hundred dollars and the man would have someone deliver her prize.
“He said, ‘Now make sure you’ll be home,'” the victim said. “And I didn’t know what to think.”
The woman never told the man where she lived, but he called repeatedly throughout Thursday and Friday and spoke to three different members of the woman’s family.
“He’d call and he’d wait a while and then he’d call back,” said the victim. “‘Had I gone to get the card yet? Did I have the card here at the house?’”
A short time later, there was a knock at the victim’s door.
It was a woman in a black and white car claiming to be a cab driver who would take the victim to get the money card she needed to claim her winnings. The victim declined to go and the woman left.
“What makes this incident unique is, is that the victim reports to us that someone actually showed up at her residence,” said Chief John Hartman, of Southwest Regional Police.
Southwest Regional Police say that means this scam likely has a local connection, and other elderly people in the area should be on guard.
“If the offer they’re getting sounds too good to be true, it is too good to be true,” says Chief Hartman. “Do not fall trap to this.”
Chief Hartman said you should also remember you can’t win a lottery you didn’t enter. And in a legit contest, you will never be asked to give money in order to get money.