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Police: Beware of common scams

Wednesday, March 7 2018 9:23 AM

Colleyville Police are asking the community to protect themselves from fraud by learning about the various common scams.

Family member in jail - The scammer will call and will identify themselves as a law enforcement official and tell the victim a family member is in jail, usually out of country or out of state. The caller will usually name the family member by their real name. They will request funds be sent via pre-loaded gift cards or a wire transfer. If in doubt, contact the family member they are saying is in jail and verify for yourself that person is indeed in jail or contact the police department.

IRS telephone scam - The caller will inform the victim there is an issue with his/her taxes and he/she needs to pay a fine immediately to avoid being arrested.

The IRS does NOT do the following:

  • Call to demand immediate payment using a specific payment method such as a prepaid debit card, gift card, or wire transfer. Generally, the IRS will first mail a bill to any taxpayer who owes taxes.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Threaten to bring in local police, immigration officers or other law-enforcement to have you arrested for not paying. The IRS also cannot revoke your driver’s license, business licenses, or immigration status. Threats like these are common tactics scam artists use to trick victims into buying into their schemes.

The IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service. Go to the following website to file a complaint if you receive a phone call claiming to be the IRS:

Sweetheart scam - The victim is approached, sometimes in a supermarket parking lot or through social media. The scammer may need minor assistance but will always flatter the suspect. If they are able to engage the victim in conversation they will arrange to meet again, eventually developing a relationship. During this relationship, they will ask the victim for money to start a business or pay medical bills. Sometimes they will even move in with the victim and take over their affairs. The elderly without family are most vulnerable to this scam.

Be aware there may be an ulterior motive when someone attempts to strike up a relationship with you out of the blue. Be careful if someone is too friendly, overly flattering, or seems to be paying you an undue amount of attention. Ask a family member, trusted friend or advisor for their honest opinion on what is occurring.

Visit for more common fraud schemes

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City of Colleyville | 100 Main Street, Colleyville, Texas 76034 | 817-503-1000 | Contact the city