BENSON – An elderly Johnston County woman lost a large sum of money after falling victim to the Grandparents scam. The 84 year-old Benson area resident received a call several weeks ago from person claiming her granddaughter had been involved in a multi-car accident and that money was needed to pay for the damages to the other vehicles.
Thinking she was helping her granddaughter, the victim was instructed to withdraw cash from the bank and place the money in her rural mailbox for someone to pick up.
The victim withdrew $3,700 from the bank and placed the cash in her mailbox. Later, she received another call and said an additional $9,250 was needed. She complied.
A third call was received and she placed $8,207 in her mailbox. There was a fourth call and she placed $9,825 in cash in her mailbox.
There was a fifth call but her bank reportedly declined to give her any more cash. She was convinced to notify law enforcement who immediately told her it was a scam.
Altogether, the elderly victim lost $30,982.
In most cases, scammers instruct the victims to wire or mail money to them. What makes this case so unusual is the victim was instructed to leave the money in her mailbox.
The Johnston County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the incident and trying to identify those responsible.