Police warn of fraudulent calls

BENNINGTON — Two law enforcement agencies are warning county residents of telephone scammers posing as police.

Both the Bennington County Sheriff's Department and Winhall Police Department alerted residents through their Facebook profiles on Tuesday.

A caller representing him or herself as "Sergeant Brown" with the sheriff's department will demand people come up with bail on an outstanding arrest warrant, according to the sheriff's department.

Sheriff Chad Schmidt "does not have a Sergeant Brown on the payroll," the Facebook post states. Further, it states: "We do not make calls like this, we will send uniformed deputies out into the field."

The phone number provided for people to return the fraudulent call was 802-505-7097.

In related incidents, a caller had posed as "Lieutenant Thomas Daniels" with the Winhall police, according to that department. The scammer has accused people of not responding to a jury summons, warns them that they committed a crime, and says they must return the call to the same number.

"There is no such person at our police department," Winhall police say. "This is a fraudulent call and there is no such phone number associated with our department."

The state's Attorney General's Office has a website and hotline where residents can report scams. For more information, visit www.uvm.edu/consumer.

or call 800-649-2424 or 802-656-3183.

Ed Damon can be reached at edamon@benningtonbanner.com, at @edamon_banner on Twitter and 802-447-7567, ext. 111.


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