GAITHERSBURG, Md. — The Montgomery County Police have released surveillance video of a man that is thought to be connected to a series of scams targeting senior citizens between the ages of 70 and 90-years-old.
The Financial Crimes Section says that this "grandparent scam" has resulted in at least three victims from May 31 to June 3, but they believe more people could have been targeted.
Police say the first victim was an 84-year-old woman in Bethesda who said she received a call from someone claiming to be her grandson, stating that he was in jail and needed money to be released. The grandmother withdrew the money and called a phone number provided to her. A short time later, a man dressed as courier arrived to her residence at the 7500 block of Hampden Lane and took the funds. The suspect left in a dark colored, four-door sedan.
An almost identical scheme was used on the second victim who reported being scammed on June 1. The 78-year-old was contacted by a person claiming that his daughter was in jail and that she needed money for her release. After withdrawing the money, the victim instructed the alleged "courier" to come to his residence on the 7500 block of Hampden Lane in Poolesville, Md. to collect the funds. This time, the man was seen walking away.
The most recent target was on June 3 involving an 89-year-old grandmother in Rockville, Md. who withdrew money to pay for the release of her alleged grandson in jail. The person on the phone claimed to be a lawyer, he said that a bondsman would arrive to her home in the 14000 block of London Lane to pick up the funds. The man in the UPS-style uniform wearing a reflective vest retrieved the money and left on foot.
The suspect is described as a tall male, heavy set, wearing a brown UPS type uniform and reflective vest.
Montgomery County Police say these scammers tend to work fast and discourage their victims from asking questions or taking time to check information. They also ask people to avoid answering numbers that they do not recognize.
Anyone with information regarding this suspect or this crime is asked to call the Financial Crimes Section at (240) 773-6330 or 240-773-TIPS, or contact Crime Solvers of Montgomery County toll-free at 1-866-411-TIPS (8477). A reward of up to $10,000 is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of the suspect. Callers can remain anonymous.