Charleston deputies warn of possible sweepstakes phone scam

Charleston deputies warn of possible sweepstakes phone scam

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - Charleston County deputies sent a warning Wednesday about a possible phone scam in which a caller claims to be attempting to deliver a big prize in a nationally-recognized sweepstakes.

A 74-year-old woman called deputies to report a suspicious phone call from a woman with a New York area code claiming to work for the Publisher's Clearing House Sweepstakes, according to Charleston County Sheriff's Lt. C.W. Brokaw.

The caller said the would-be victim was a winner, but since she did not win the grand prize, there would be no large check or camera crew coming to her home, deputies say. However, the caller told the woman that if she was willing to accept a smaller prize, she would have to speak to one of their company attorneys, deputies say.

The woman told deputies the man claiming to be an attorney asked her several questions, then told her she would have to pay taxes on the prize before it could be delivered and offered to set a time as early as the next day to come to her home and take her to the bank so she could withdraw the money to pay the alleged taxes, Brokaw said.

Deputies say the woman made up a ruse, claiming she would have to run it by her daughter, who she said was a police officer, at which point the man claiming to be an attorney abruptly hung up the phone.

The woman wanted others to know what was happening so they would not get scammed, Brokaw said.

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