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Phone Hoax Plays On Heartstrings, OHP Says
master_jim2008 | September 5, 2008 at 01:30 pmby
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Phone Hoax Plays On Heartstrings, OHP Says'Sick' Call Delivers Message About Fatal CrashesPOSTED: 11:13 pm CDT September 4, 2008UPDATED: 10:18 am CDT September 5, 2008
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Oklahoma highway patrol troopers are arning people about a heartstopping and money-wasting hoax that comes in the form of a phone call to your home.VIDEO: Troopers Warn Of Call About CrashTroopers said someone is calling people to tell them someone they know has been involved in a crash and telling them to call another number for more information. Dialing that number makes it easier for other people to bill your phone for their phone calls.“I know my heart was racing. I know my mom’s heart was racing,” said Linda Lerma, who received one of the calls. “They said it was fatal, which is telling me maybe somebody’s dead.”Lerma said the caller claimed to be with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol and told her to dial the number of a sergeant at the scene of a crash.“This is the sickest kind of sick,” said OHP Capt. Chris West. He said the phone call is designed to trick the recipient into paying for other people’s calls.West said troopers never inform you of a loved one’s death over the phone. They always deliver the unfortunate message in person.“When you've actually gone to people's houses and knocked on the door and woke them up in the middle of the night to deliver these death messages, I mean myself, as a law enforcement officer, I take this kind of thing personally,” West said.“To intentionally try to scare somebody is not nice,” Lermas said. She said she didn’t dial the number and was ready when the same scammer tried to do it again on Thursday.“This guy's not very smart that's doing it because he called me back again today and went to tell me the same story,” she said.