Local phone scam scares East Texas resident - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Local phone scam scares East Texas resident

By Annette Falconer –bio|email

BULLARD, TX (KLTV) - It may be an old scam, but as long as it works, it's still new to the victims.

We've been telling you about this scam for years.  Basically, someone will call you, claiming a relative or a friend is in jail and needs you.  They'll give you a number to call.  But when you call it ... that's when they've got you.

One East Texas woman, Zoe Ann Pack of Bullard, did that very thing, and now she's having a hard time stopping them.  Pack had a brother that was murdered in Cherokee County, and the murderer is in a local prison.  Pack instantly thought it could have been him trying to reach her, as he has in the past by letter.  This scared Pack, and she notified the Sheriff's Department immediately.

The sheriff's office did notify Pack that it was just a phone scam, and not any personal attack towards her.  Pack said, "I'm scared, there is still a small piece of me that makes me wonder, prisoners have a lot of leeway now days."  Pack wants to believe the police, so she has called her local phone company to try to stop the harassing phone calls.

Pack accepted a collect call that said it was from a prisoner who needed her help.  Not knowing who it could be, she accepted.  Someone at that time picked up and apologized.  Pack said, " After he apologized he said he was calling from the jail and a lot of times when people are booked in they give false information, such as their name or phone number."  The man insisted for her to dial star seventy two and then a local phone number.  That would take her off the list.  In all actuality, it did the exact opposite.  Pack  at that time just forwarded her phone number to that one.  Now the owner of that phone can call long distance or anything else, while Pack pays the charges. 

Captain Raffield says East Texans need to be aware that this is an old, and a common scam.  If you get a suspicious phone call, hang up.  Then pick up the phone, and dial star fifty two, and follow the directions.  The previous call will be traced by your phone company.  At that point you can call your local authorities. 

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