Niagara Gazette

September 18, 2013

Alert Rite Aid employees keep elderly Lockport woman from being scammed

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette

Niagara County Sheriff's deputies were called in Tuesday night to the South Transit Road Rite Aid to assist Lockport police in dealing with a 78-year-old woman who was in the process of being scammed.

Store employees called police after the woman told them she loading up two Green Dot debit cards with $500 each to pay for a car she had just won. When police arrived, the woman told them someone claiming to be from Publisher's Clearing House called her and told her she had just won a Mercedes car and it would be parked in her driveway when she arrived home. The person on the phone told her to load up $500 each on the debit cards but it wasn't reported what she was supposed to do with them.

The Rite Aid employees would not perform the transactions and the deputy thanked them for calling police.

Despite what police said, the deputy said the woman still believed the car would be in her driveway when she arrived home. 

The deputy followed the woman the woman home and there was no Mercedes in the driveway. The woman showed the deputy the number that had called her (876-863-1390) and the deputy noticed that phone number had been calling her about 10 times a day. A search on the internet determined the number was notorious for scams out of Jamaica. It was not a number related to Publishers Clearing House.

The deputy told the woman to have her son, who was working at the time, call the sheriff's office about the matter.