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Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office warns of scammers targeting the elderly

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Olmsted County Sheriff wants people to be on alert for scammers, commonly targeting the elderly.

A Sheriff’s Office report released in December shows 7 southern Minnesotans were recent victims.

  • A Byron man lost $350,000
  • A Stewartville Woman lost $5,000
  • A Byron man lost $80,000
  • An Eyota man lost $7,200
  • An Eyota man lost $4,000
  • A Rochester woman lost $20,000

The scammers in these cases disguised themselves as lottery distributors, the IRS, utility or electronic services, and even people the victims had befriended on dating sites.

“I know banks were able to cancel some checks for a couple of cases but the majority of the money is gone. Once it gets sent and they receive it, it’s gone,” said Lt. Lee Rossman, Olmsted County Sheriff’s Office.

Rochester resident David Meek was also a victim.

“I got a call from the 800 number on the back of my card for fraud protection,” he said.

Meek was targeted three days after Christmas.

“They called and they asked if I was in New York, or somewhere out east. And there was $40 and something odd change at Barnes and Nobles and a $400 or almost $500 at Walmart out there,” he said.

The scammers pretended to be from his bank and that they were working to protect him from fraudulent purchases. They proceeded to instruct Meek on how they could help solve the problem.

“The guy on the other end said, ‘Let me send you a text message with a code and you put that in your phone. And so I did. And then my girlfriend was…

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