Local Taxi Driver Saves Elderly Resident From Being Victimized By ‘Grandparent Scam’

Quincy Police are praising a local taxi driver for helping to prevent an elderly resident from being scammed out of several thousand dollars.

According to the Quincy Police Facebook page, on Thursday, Feb. 7, while working his shift for Yellow Cab, Richard Spencer picked up an 87-year-old female who requested to be taken to Walmart. While enroute, the victim told Spencer that she needed to buy more gift cards for her grandson that was in trouble. Another cab driver had told Mr. Spencer that the elderly female had gone to a location earlier in the day and bought two separate gift cards each for $2,000.

Spencer, believing the elderly passenger was being scammed, brought her straight to the Quincy Police Station.

The victim told officers that she received a phone call from a male, who identified himself as her grandson. The caller stated he was in a car accident and needed the victim to send him gift cards so he would not go to jail. This male gave the victim specific instructions on how to call a cab, go to a certain location, purchase two gift cards, call the number back and provide the gift card and pin numbers.

“This, ladies and gentlemen, is a text-book ‘Grandparent Scam,’” stated Quincy Police on its Facebook Page. “While the victim in this scam may be out $4,000 (which is a substantial amount of money), it could have been much, much worse.”

Police had this advice:

“Cashiers, etc: If you work in an environment that sells gift cards, take a moment to ask yourself – Does this make sense? Why would an 87-year-old individual need $4,000 in gift cards to this particular store/app. Ask questions. Sure, there may be a legitimate reason, but if you take the time and ask the questions, you just might prevent someone from falling victim.

“Thank you Mr. Spencer for caring,” Quincy Police said. “You could have chosen to remain silent and ignore the signs. But you didn’t. And for that we say thank you.”


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