Alleged sex offenders targeted by phone scammers pretending to be police

Published: Jul. 25, 2022 at 4:52 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - Virginia State Police are warning the public about a phone scam in which someone claiming to be a police detective offers to trade payment for an impending arrest.

State Police have gotten reports of someone claiming to be Detective Keith McCoy, from Virginia State Police, calling people and demanding money in exchange for not being arrested on sex offender charges. Police say this is a scam, as Virginia State Police don’t operate that way.

Police say, “Virginia State Police will not call or approach anyone threatening to arrest for non-payment of money. The Virginia State Police does not collect money for any court system. If the state police have business with an individual, it will be done in person, and no money will be collected.”

There are many scams in which callers attempt to make victims pay and will try not to let them off the phone until payment has been made, according to police, but potential victims are urged by police not to pay by phone. If there is a question, hang up and look up the phone number for whichever agency is claiming to have called. Don’t call back the number from which the caller called. Listen for inconsistencies the caller may use. For one, Virginia State Police don’t have detectives.

Police say you should also ask any caller to meet you at the police department or sheriff’s office.

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