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Police Blotter

Elderly women scammed

Posted: August 25, 2015 - 11:15pm  |  Updated: August 26, 2015 - 12:38am

The following accounts were taken from Columbia County Sheriff’s Office incident reports:

 

Elderly women scammed

Two elderly Columbia County women told police Friday that men came to their homes and stole from them.

An 85-year-old Harlem woman said three Asian men pulled up to her home at about 2 p.m. Thursday in a gray Chevrolet Silverado. One of the men said they needed to look at her roof to see if it needs replacing. One of them walked through her home and out the back door to look at the roof in the back of the home while the other two waited outside. After he looked at the roof, the man and his colleagues got back into the truck and left.

When the woman went to her bedroom, she discovered $3,325 worth of jewelry missing from her dresser.

An 86-year-old Evans woman said she’d been getting statements from what she believed was the Columbia County Water Utility about obtaining a water sample from her home because the county purchased a portion of her property. On Friday, two Hispanic men came to her home and said they needed to collect water samples. The men wore golf polo shirts. She believes they arrived in a white truck with a blue stripe.

The woman said she wasn’t alarmed until the men started asking questions including if she lived alone and how often her grandson was at the home. They said the water faucets needed to run for six minutes before they could take a sample. In hindsight, the woman said she should have kept a better eye on them as they split up and went about her house.

After the men left, she found her mattress pulled away from the wall and the base of her bed moved. A watch was missing from an unlocked lock box in her grandson’s room and his room was obviously shuffled through. The area where she keeps her mail had also been shuffled through and she was concerned with bank information the men could possibly use fraudulently.

 

Woman’s home is vandalized

A Martinez woman said early Saturday that her daughter’s boyfriend vandalized her home, which he was moving from.

The 42-year-old woman called authorities to the home at about 1 a.m. after having an argument with her daughter’s boyfriend. She said he was intoxicated and screaming at her. He said they were arguing about moving out of the house they shared and he didn’t want her around him while they moved. The woman agreed to stay at her other daughter’s home for the night while the couple packed their belongings.

Deputies responded to the home again at about 10:45 a.m. because the woman said her daughter’s boyfriend vandalized the house. She said her other daughter’s boyfriend noticed the vandalism and called her.

The responding deputy could see through an open window into the bedroom the daughter’s boyfriend had moved out of. The door was boarded up from the inside and the furniture was thrown on the ground with trash scattered around the room.

Tiles were glued to the wall spelling the word “slut” and someone tiled over the light switch. The deputy went into the room and saw couches and other living room furniture stacked up against the door to prevent anyone from coming in.

The kitchen cabinets had been glued shut, tile was torn up in the bathroom and shelves in the bathroom were torn off. In the backyard, doors were ripped off the shed.

 

Woman discovers credit card fraud

A Grovetown woman told police Thursday that someone used her personal information to open and use a credit card.

The 42-year-old woman said that when she got home from work at about 7:30 p.m., there was a message on her answering machine from a Discover representative, who stated there was fraudulent activity on her account and she needed to contact the company immediately. She was skeptical because she doesn’t have a Discover card. She called the number provided and spoke to someone who wanted her to provide her mother’entire Social Security number as verification. She gave her maiden name, but would only give the last four digits of her Social Security number.

The representative told the woman they couldn’t discuss the account unless she gave the entire number.

The woman hung up and looked up a direct phone number for Discover. When she called, the woman was able to verify her identity with the last four digits of her Social Security number and her mother’s maiden name. The birthday on file for the account was Sept. 7, 1972, which is close, but not the woman’s correct birthday.

The Discover representative told the woman that there was about $3,000 worth of charges to the account, including multiple $480 cash withdrawals at different ATMs. The representative couldn’t discuss the other charges with the woman. But she called back with a deputy in the room and got information about when the account was opened and used.

All the charges and cash withdrawals were made in the Atlanta area. On Aug. 17, someone attempted to buy $1,517.85 worth of groceries from an Atlanta Kroger, but the card was declined and the account flagged.

The woman froze the account.

 

Man scammed
on Craig’s List

A Columbia County man called authorities Thursday stating he’d been scammed trying to buy gift cards through online site www.craigslist.com.

The 38-year-old man said that he’d bought some gift cards that were later emptied before he could use them. He met another man who had advertised some gift cards for sale at the Steak and Shake on Aug. 12. After verifying the balances on a Dillard’s card and two Kohls cards totaling $1,100, the man paid the seller $400.

He’d previously messaged the seller that he did not want to get involved with anything illegal. The seller said they were gifts from family and he had another card with a receipt showing its balance at his home. The man agreed to buy the fourth card and went shopping at Kohls.

On Aug. 16, the seller said he found the other Kohls card and provided a receipt that showed it was loaded with $200. The man paid him $75. But when he got home, the man said he noticed that the gift card was purchased with a credit card. He got suspicious and checked the balances on all the cards, which all had zero balances.

The man called the seller, who rambled on about how he applied for the credit card using his father’s Social Security number and that he’d reimburse the man in a few days. When the man said he was calling authorities, the seller said he had no problem and could explain everything.

The man said he wasn’t concerned with getting his money back because he knew the risk of buying items off the site. But he didn’t want to be involved with someone using a stolen Social Security number.

 

Packages stolen
from neighbors

Two Grovetown neighbors told deputies Friday that packages were stolen from their porches.

A 31-year-old resident of High Meadows Drive said she ordered a pair of shoes from www.macys.com and the U.S. Postal Service informed her the shoes were delivered at 12:14 p.m. When she got home at 4 p.m., the package was missing.

The woman’s 51-year-old neighbor also told deputies packages were stolen from his porch. He said one was delivered by the Postal Service at 12:15 p.m. and another was delivered at 12:38 p.m. by UPS. But were stolen from his porch before he returned home at 3:15 p.m.

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