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May 24, 2013 at 10:12 AM

Con man posing as Seattle cop scams 5 women out of more than $75K

Seattle police say a con artist posing as a cop has scammed at least five elderly women out of more than $75,000.

According to police, the man phoned the victims at their homes and identified himself as “Capt. Jack Truska,” or “Sgt. Drumbowski,” or some other name. He claimed to be investigating banks for passing counterfeit money to customers. After questioning the victims about their jewelry and money, and whether they’ve had any cash or checks stolen recently, the con man asks his victims if they can assist police in a “sting operation,” according to the SPD Blotter.

He then convinces the victims that their bank is involved in the counterfeiting operation, and asks them to withdraw tens of thousands of dollars so he can check the serial numbers of the cash.

Several of the victims told police the con man spent a great deal of time talking to them on the phone and called them from a busy-sounding office in an apparent effort to make himself sound like a real detective working the case.

The victims would then meet a man posing as a plainclothes officer near their bank and hand over the cash, which they believed was evidence in a counterfeiting case.

The con man was able to convince five women to withdrew money from their bank accounts. A sixth woman got suspicious and never went to meet with the fake cop, police said.

Police offer the following tips to avoid being taken in by the scam:

– Police don’t randomly call people at home and ask them to participate in sting operations.

– Police also won’t place calls from a blocked number.

– Anyone who receives a call from someone claiming to be a police officer can always verify that the caller is indeed a police officer. Phone numbers for members of the Seattle Police Department’s can be found in the department directory.

Anyone who believes they know a victim of the scam should call Seattle police at 206-625-5011.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: impersonating an officer, scam, Seattle Police Department

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