85-year-old phone scam victim turns into crime fighter

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Carolina Leid has more from Harrison.

Nearly twenty-four thousand dollars are completely gone in a telephone scam in Westchester County. The 85-year-old victim lives in the Village of Harrison. The suspect lives 260 miles away in Falmouth, Maine.

On May 18th, a person claiming to represent a credit card company called and said there were large fraudulent charges to the woman's account. She was then told by a man who called himself 'Trooper Phillips' that he needed her help, and that in order to get to the bottom of it, she needed to mail $23,900 to Portland, Maine.

Two days later, the woman released it was a scam, and called police. So, here's the twist - police got the victim to convince the scammers that she would mail even more money. When the package arrived in Maine, Harrison Police were there waiting.

Donovan Wallace is charged with grand larceny and conspiracy.

Harrison Police Chief Anthony Marraccini says his detectives are aggressive with these cases, cracking two important ones last year. In one case, five people were arrested for allegedly duping a woman out of $300,000. In another case, a man allegedly scammed a 90-year-old resident out of $23,000 after a woman posed as her granddaughter.

In response, Harrison Police made fliers, giving information about IRS, bank and utility scams. They say the key is no one should call you asking for personal information over the phone, or for money transfers.
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