Union Co. deputies warn of uptick in scams, including scammers taking advantage of pandemic

Local News

UNION COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – An investigation in Union County took down two suspected scammers. Ones that deputies told us tricked an elderly woman into handing over a lot of money. But they said, this is nothing new. In fact, they told 7 News they’re seeing a rise in scam cases.

Scammers are at it again, this time they’re accused of hitting up a home on a Union County road.

“I think she should at least get compensated or her money back, somebody should do something,” Union County resident Caleb Mcabee said.

Deputies with the Union County Sheriff’s Office told us an elderly woman was contacted by some scammers, claiming to have intentions of protecting her money from the bank. However, $70,000 later, she learned that wasn’t the case.

But as the COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Union County deputies told us so are scams like this. Especially ones claiming to offer COVID-19 antibody testing.

“We want to advise patients to be very careful when talking to someone over the phone who says they’re from a certain lab or certain agency,” said Nurse Practitioner with Lowcountry Urgent Care, Felisha Booker.

In fact, Nurse Practitioner Felisha Booker said they believe that’s why they had some COVID-19 testing materials stolen last week.

“They’re specific for the COVID testing so I don’t know what else the use for it would be,” said Booker.

Deputies said scammers are using this as a way to obtain your personal information. In some cases, asking you to hand over money in order to get a test.

That’s why people like Zari Rice and his daughter are avoiding any unknown calls and coming right to the source of the testing sites.

“We do get scam calls but we don’t answer the landline. If it’s somebody we know, we recognize their number or they just leave a voicemail, then we answer,” said Union County resident Zari Rice.

Booker told us, if someone contacts you claiming to offer this kind of testing, verify where they’re coming from, ask what lab they use and if they’re certified. Most importantly, deputies said to never hand over money to someone you don’t know.

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