Video shows police take down of scam artist outwitted by 73-year-old Long Island woman

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Sunday, January 23, 2022
73-year-old LI resident helps police take down elderly scam artist
When the man came to her home to pick up the money, she handed over an empty envelope and police waiting inside jumped into action

SEAFORD, Long Island (WABC) -- Officials on Long Island are alerting people to elderly scams after a 73-year-old woman helped police outwit a group of would-be fraudsters.

The woman from Seaford became suspicious when she received a call from a man Thursday afternoon claiming to be her grandson.

He said he was in jail.

She later received a second call from a fake lawyer asking for $8,000 for her grandson's bail.

That's when the woman decided to make a call herself, to Nassau County Police.

Officers were interviewing the woman about the incident when a third man called claiming to be a bail bondsman.

He said he was in the neighborhood and could stop by to pick up the cash.

Officers instructed her to follow along with the scam and let them handle the rest.

When the man came to her home to pick up the money, she handed over an empty envelope and the officers waiting inside jumped into action.

The dramatic event was all captured on the woman's home security camera.

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Nassau Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder applauded the woman for taking action by reaching out to local authorities.

"She's smart enough to call out and reach out to the police department and say, 'I think I'm being taken advantage of,'" Ryder said.

The commissioner urged the public to speak to vulnerable family members and neighbors about potential scams and what to watch out for.

"These individuals sit at home and have nothing else to do but think of ways to take advantage of our elderly," Ryder said.

Joshua Estrella Gomez, 28, has been charged with attempted grand larceny.

Ryder joked the woman may be made a member of the police department for her efforts in the arrest.

"It was dramatic, and I think the county executive is going to deputize her as one of our police commissioners," Ryder said.


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