Don’t fall prey to scams

City of Dunkirk Police Chief David Ortolano is reminding residents to avoid phone scams, such as the ones two city residents have been involved with recently.

In one case, a city resident was offered the opportunity to take part in a corporate sponsorship with an ad on his private vehicle. The resident was sent a check for $4,500 to cover the cost of the decal, and in return, was to send money back for fees and contracts to cover the deal. The resident waited until he found out the validity of the check he received – which turned out to be no good – and he avoided losing any money.

In the other case, an elderly woman fell victim to one of the heart-tugging scams involving the alleged arrest of a relative, in this case a grandchild. The woman was told unless she sent money right away her grandson would be in “big trouble.” The woman sent the requested funds and is now out that money.

“If it sounds too good to be true it probably is,” Ortolano said of the sponsorship scam. “Don’t send money to anyone until you check it out,” he added of the arrest scam.

Ortolano also reminded residents to be vigilant in their neighborhoods, citing recent garage entries – and one house entry – in the West Fourth Street area.

“Lock and secure your homes, garages and sheds. Lock your car doors and keep valuables out of sight,” he added. “If you see or hear anything out of the ordinary or suspicious, call the desk right away.”

The police desk number is 366-2266 and the confidential tipline number is 363-0313.