Thomas Perkins, Chief of Police
1 Friend Court
PO Box 536
Wenham, MA 01984
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017
Contact: John Guilfoil
Wenham Police Issue Warning About New Telephone Scam
WENHAM — Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger and Chief Thomas Perkins are warning residents about a new telephone scam. The fraudulent caller claims the citizen owes $2,000 in legal fines that can be immediately resolved with a credit card.
The individual is falsely identifying himself as Sgt. Roberts from the Essex County Sheriff’s Department and is calling from the phone number (978) 704-0628. The voicemail deceivingly cites the sheriff’s office and address.
“Residents should never provide sensitive information after receiving an unsolicited phone call,” Chief Perkins said. “The best thing to do is ignore unknown numbers and let it go to voicemail.”
Reports of the telephone scam have been coming over the last few days, but the number has since been disconnected.
“At no time would an Essex County employee ever phone people to demand fine payments,” Sheriff Coppinger said. “This practice of demanding payment immediately over a phone is an obvious sign of a scam and illegal attempt to defraud.”
Sheriff departments in Massachusetts and New Hampshire have faced similar scams in recent months. The Essex County Sheriff’s Department will be partnering with other agencies to identify and prosecute the caller.
Scammers are getting more creative in targeting victims. If you receive this type of call, either hang up or do not pick up. If you have already responded, review all your statements for any unauthorized charges and contact your bank to flag possible unauthorized charges.
If residents receive a suspicious call, alert the local police department and to file an online complaint with the Federal Trade Commission.