The Middletown Police Department is sending a warning to Connecticut residents to be aware of phone scammers after a recent incident.
Emely Guzman-Hernandez is accused of being involved with a scam in Middletown, police said. She was arrested and charged with second-degree criminal attempt to commit larceny and second-degree conspiracy to commit larceny.
Middletown Police said the investigation began when officers responded to speak to a local resident on July 9 who claimed she had received a call from someone who identified himself as “Public Defender Sandberg” on behalf of her nephew.
According to the report, the caller told the resident that her nephew was under custody after a car accident and was being held at the Cheshire Police Department with a $9,500 bail.
The resident said she was able to speak with someone claiming to be her nephew, but when confronted that his voice sounded different, he attributed it to the alleged crash.
The caller explained that a judge agreed to handle her nephew’s case if she paid the $9,500 indirectly to a bondsman that would arrive at her residence. She was also instructed to place the payment in a bubble-protected envelope as well as with a new t-shirt because her nephew was “injured in the accident and his shirt was bloody.”
After the resident withdrew the money and provided the envelope and t-shirt, a vehicle arrived at her home where a woman exited the car and took the envelope.
The resident at this point suspected the situation was a scam and connected with the family members who then confirmed her nephew was not in custody.
Middletown Police detained Guzman-Hernandez at the scene after she appeared a second time to receive a second negotiation with the resident. According to authorities, Guzman-Hernandez claimed she had received a call from a friend to pick up money “from his aunt’s house.” She was held on a $150,000 surety bond.
If you receive a similar call claiming that a loved one is detained or incarcerated, contact the police department or agency directly as local police departments can confirm if someone is in custody. Police described this as a common tactic used during phone scams.
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