By Sabina Mollot
Police are looking for a man who duped an elderly Peter Cooper Village resident out of $2,000, claiming it was bail she’d need to pay to free a friend who was arrested.
The man called the victim, a 93-year-old woman, at home on Friday, May 26 to say that a friend of hers was arrested and at Rikers Island. He then informed her the bail would cost her $6,500. When the victim said she only had $2,000, the scammer then arrived at her home to collect the cash. Afterwards, the victim got suspicious and called her friend, who, it turned out, had not been arrested.
The suspect is described as a black man with a slim build, who was last seen wearing a blue, hooded sweater with white stripes on its arms, a black shirt and dark colored pants.
Police have withheld the victim’s exact address, but said it was in the vicinity of 20th Street and First Avenue.
An NYPD spokesperson said it isn’t clear how the scammer got information about her or her friend, noting there are many different ways of phishing.
Phone scams have been a growing problem nationwide, including in the Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village area, but police have said many of those, including the IRS scam and Treasury department scams, are perpetrated from overseas.
Update: A spokesperson for Stuyvesant Town management, Marynia Kruk, said, “StuyTown Property Services is aware of the incident, and is assisting the NYPD with their investigation, including by providing video footage.”