Bogus hostage call scam brings heavy police presence into Everton subdivision

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Local police are urging residents to be aware of the latest phone scams, including one that gives the appearance of an urgent and potentially dangerous situation.

A spokesperson for the Peachtree City Police Department posted on social media the morning of June 27 to explain the reason for a heavy police presence in The Everton subdivision that morning.

Police received a frantic phone call at about 6:30 a.m. from a resident who said that someone was holding their relative hostage and threatening to shoot them if money was not immediately transferred electronically. The situation was made more confusing by the fact that the relative allegedly in danger could not be reached by phone once the threats were received.

Police stressed that this is a common scam that is currently being played out all over. In addition to being very convincing on the phone, scammers are able to clone a victim’s phone number so it appears as though the call is being placed from the family member’s actual phone.

“Obviously, these types of calls have to be treated as legitimate until all measures have been exhausted to confirm the hoax,” according to the police department’s statement. “Hence the heavy presence this morning. Fortunately, once assets were in place, officers were able to make contact with the alleged victim and confirm that all was well and she was indeed safe.”

Police are using this episode to encourage everyone to take some time and research the various scams that are growing increasingly popular right now, so that people can recognize them and prepare for them to avoid being victims.