On Dec 9 Greenwich Police observed a male suspect retrieving a UPS package that he believed to contain $6,000 that were proceeds from a “Grandparent Scam” on South Water Street in Byram.
The suspect, Frederick Delacruz, 30, of Bronx, NY, was confronted by police and engaged officers in a brief foot pursuit.
“This happens a lot, but more frequently during holidays ,” Lt John Slusarz said. “Someone will call up, and it’ll be a bad connection and they say, ‘Grandma? Grandpa?'”
He was charged with Interfering with an Officer, Telephone Fraud 3rd degree, Criminal Attempt Larceny 3. His bond was set at $100,00, which he was unable to post. He has a date in Stamford Superior Court on Dec 16, 2019.
The grandparent scam typically involves an urgent phone call from someone pretending to be their grandchild. Then the caller asks the victim to send or wire money immediately.
According to AARP this financial ruse is not new, but takes on different forms. In 2017 nearly one in five people reported losing money in an impostor scheme like the grandparent scam, amounting to a loss of $328 million, according to the FTC. And those ages 70 and older have suffered the highest average losses.