Police Log: Man Scammed for Over $20K, Plaque Stolen from Veteran’s Grave

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The following information was provided by the Watertown Police Department.




May 18 3:06 p.m.: Police were contacted by an Standish Road resident and her daughter after they found unusual activity on her bank account. She received a notice from their bank about several pre-authorized withdrawals from the account, and an estimated $30,000 had been taken and deposited into an unknown PayPal account. The account has been frozen by the bank and the family. They were able to recover approximately $22,000. Police investigating the $8,000 loss.

May 18, 3:23 p.m.: A man parked his car in the parking lot of the Atrium School on May 17, and when he came back on the 18th he found the four tires slashed and a side window shattered. Also, a door handle and the gas tank cover were broken off and someone sprayed black paint around the interior of the vehicle.

May 20, 3:57 p.m.: A metal plaque was stolen off a headstone at the St. Patrick’s Cemetery that indicated that it was a veteran’s burial site. A Watertown man, the son of the veteran, discovered it on May 20, and said it had been there on May 13. The estimated cost to replace the plaque is $100. Cemetery management was also notified.

May 21, 7:10 p.m.: A Highland Avenue resident received call from someone claiming to be his daughter, who said that she had been in a car accident in Georgia and she needed money to get out of jail. The caller said she had a friend who was a lawyer who was trying to help her, and she needed $22,100. The man took the money out of the bank in cash and was told to get a courier would come by to pick up the money. Also, he was told that he should not ask the courier any questions due to a gag order being in effect.

We took a report over the phone from a 76-yea.-old man victim who lives on Highland Avenue. The victim reported that at about 9:30 a.m. they received a call from someone claiming to be his daughter. The alleged daughter said she had been in a car ,ccident in Georgia and her friend, who is a layer, was trying to help here, also told him she was arrested. Said she needed $22,100 to get out of jail and a courier who worked for her lawyer friend would pick the money up. Instructed to gibe the money to the courier but not to ask any questions due to a gag order being in effect. The victim went to the bank and with drew the the money all in cash. At about 1 p.m., a black SUV pulls up to his house and the resident handed a man the money and he drove off. There was no conversation. The courier was described as a light skinned African-American or hispanic male, 5-foot-6, 30-40 years old, heavyset, wearing light grey hoody and bluejeans. Several hours later the man realized he had been scammed. Police believe it is related to a similar scam of a resident on Marion Road, and similar scams reported in other communities in the Greater Boston area.

May 22, 5:13 p.m.: A resident discovered that someone had sent an unauthorized digital check from his bank account for $39.95. He found the discrepancy when he was reviewing his bank statement. It was deposited into a bank in Wilmington, Del.

May 23, 9:21 p.m.: A fire was discovered in a backyard of a Sycamore Street home. The Fire Department arrived and safely extinguished the blaze. The fire started in a trashcan in the driveway and may have been caused by some old varnish and an airbrush that was left in the trashcan. The fire melted some of the home’s siding, and caused an estimated $500 in damage.

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