A quick-thinking New York woman outsmarted a man who apparently thought he could get away with scamming her out of thousands in cash, police say.
According to CBS New York, 73-year-old Jean received a call Thursday morning from a man claiming to be one of her grandsons. Dhillon said the man told her he had been in a DUI accident and needed bail money. Dhillon, a former 911 operator, said she didn’t have grandchildren old enough to drive, and quickly caught on to the scammer’s game.
“He starts calling me ‘grandma,’ and then I’m like, I don’t have a grandson that drives, so I knew it was a scam,” Jean said.
Another man claiming to be the grandson’s attorney then contacted Jean and said he needed $8,000 to get her grandson out of jail. Jean decided to keep the ruse going and contacted the police.
“I told him I had the money in the house, and I figured, he’s not going to fall for that. Well, he fell for that hook, line, and sinker,” Jean said.
When the alleged scammer showed up at Jean’s home and took an envelope filled with cut paper towels, officers were there to arrest him.
“I was playing a game, it was entertaining,” Jean told News 12 The Bronx. “I didn’t think it was really going to happen. I thought the guy would catch me in a lie. Obviously, I was pretty good because he believed me.”
Police identified the suspect as 28-year-old Joshua Estrella Gomez, of Mineola. He was arrested and charged with attempted grand larceny, according to the Nassau County police.
“Speak to your families. Speak to your neighbors. Visit those that are vulnerable. Let them know, don’t listen to these scams,” Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said.
“These individuals sit at home and have nothing else to do but think of a way to take advantage of our elderly.”
Gomez has since bailed out of jail and is expected in court next month. Check back for updates.
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[Featured Photo: Video Screenshot via CBS New York]