Phone Scam Targets Elderly In Chautauqua County

MAYVILLE – The Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Department, under the direction of Sheriff Joseph Gerace, is investigating a number of reports on a telephone scam that may be targeting the elderly in the county.
The Sheriff’s Office recently received several complaints regarding a phone scam that seems to target elderly people. The scammers have been calling the potential victims and representing themselves as public defenders.
The scammers reportedly tell the victims that one of their relatives, usually a grandchild, has been arrested or involved in an accident. The scammers then demand money for bail and legal fees and tell the victims to purchase gift cards and/or prepaid credit cards as payment. The scammers often know the names of the victims’ family members and may even represent themselves as a family member.
Some of the victims were also contacted on social media. If someone receives a call like this please be aware that it is a scam and discontinue the call immediately. To report an incident please contact the Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office at 716-753-4232.