Couple doesn't fall for fake deputy's arrest threat

Couple doesn't fall for fake deputy's arrest threat »Play Video
Clifford and Wini Olsen didn't fall for a scammer's claim that he was a sheriff's deputy and would arrest Clifford if the couple didn't pay him to clear an arrest warrant.

BEAVERTON, Ore. – A fake sheriff's deputy is making calls to people in the Portland area in an attempt to get your money.

The man tells people they have warrants for their arrest and if they pay him money, the warrants will be dropped. If they don't, they'll be arrested.

He called a couple in Beaverton on Tuesday evening and told them to give him more than $800 or the husband could go to jail. But Clifford Olsen, 90, and his 82-year-old wife, Wini, didn't fall for the scam.

The fake deputy said Clifford had not shown up for jury duty and there was a warrant for his arrest. If they didn't pay the fine by debit card, credit card or a pay card from the Wal-Mart near their house, deputies would show up at the house and haul Clifford to jail.

"We were frightened, we were upset," said Wini. "We locked the doors and I closed all the blinds. And it's scary to think that anyone could be right outside the door."

The Olsens didn't give in or let fear take over. They listened carefully to what the caller was saying and finally figured out his story didn't add up. Wini hung up on him and called the real police to report it.

Wini's advice is to hesitate before you agree to pay money when someone calls you. And slow down, ask questions, and tell them you'll call them back. Also, hang up if they pressure you and don't let them bully you.

According to Beaverton police, there have been other reports of this happening in the metro area. Spokesman Mike Rowe called it a "major concern for law enforcement."

Beaverton police want anyone who has given money to such a caller or has received a similar call to let them know by calling (503) 629-0111.

If you have a problem, contact the KATU Problem Solvers. You can email them at problemsolvers@katu.com or call 503-736-3415.