Scammers impersonating law enforcement, police ask you to stay vigilant

Sgt. Wade Betters said law enforcement will never ask you for money.
(Source: WAVE)
(Source: WAVE)(WAVE 3 News)
Published: Mar. 2, 2021 at 7:27 PM EST
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Scammers have taken their efforts to another level.

Some are now impersonating local police officers.

Bangor Police Department’s Sgt. Wade Betters said, “Scammers will do their homework. They’ll find out what town they think you might live in and what police agency you might use.”

Sgt. Wade Betters with the Bangor Police Department says scammers pretending to be law enforcement is not uncommon, but this was a first.

“My name was actually used by one of the scammers,” Sgt. Betters explained.

He says this scheme happened over the weekend.

“Telling the victim that they needed to acquire several $1,000 a gift cards. and the victim will go buy those and then read the numbers off the gift card, provide them with a pin number. As soon as you do, that the money is gone,” Sgt. Betters added.

Betters said that plot convinced someone to send around $3,000 in gift cards to scammers in another state.

Police remind you not to give out personal information.

“If someone calls you, claiming to be a member of law enforcement, even if it’s your local law enforcement agency please do your homework and verify that. We will not call you asking to give us money or to transfer funds in order to avoid being arrested or to make up for a missed court date. It’s just a scam,” Sgt. Betters said.

If something seems off, it probably is. Betters says the best thing you can do is hang up the phone.

Sgt. Betters explained, “No matter what they’re telling you, they’re gonna try to scare you, play on your emotions, tell you that you need to get this taken care of and are going away. It’s just not true.”

Betters says you can always check with your police department to see if they called.

“Ask to speak with that officer or someone there. That’s how you’ll tell,” Sgt. Betters said.

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