Man falls for grandparent scam twice in same day
MCCRACKEN COUNTY, Ky. — Your loved one is in a foreign country, in the hospital or maybe they're stuck in prison, accused of a crime they didn't commit. It's a con that took a local man for thousands of dollars in cash twice in the same day.
The 78-year-old victim loves his family so much, when he heard who he thought was his grandson in big trouble, he said he would do anything to help him out, even if it meant taking large amounts of cash out of savings and sending that money to Mexico.
"Oh Lord man, in Cancun, Mexico, in jail, I thought the worst naturally would be happening, so that prompted me to take action," Bob Kennedy said.
He followed every instruction as quickly as possible to save his grandson Adam from a Mexican prison.
"I love my grandson. They don't treat their prisoners real good in Mexico and I figured he'd get pretty banged up," he said. "I was anxious to get him out of there."
And that's why when scammers asked for more, he fell for it again.
"I said 'Man you're killing me.' He said 'I know, I know.' Sounded just like my grandson, sounded just like him," Kennedy said.
After Kennedy realized he'd been scammed, he called Western Union to see if there was any way he could get that money back. They told him no, because just minutes after the transfer, the money had been withdrawn in Mexico.
The real Adam, who was a mile down the street all along, is touched by his grandfather's compassion.
"He said he wouldn't leave me stranded in Cancun. That's good to know. He'd help me out," Adam said.
But he's furious that it happened, and so is McCracken County Attorney Michael Murphy, who sees schemes like this time and time again. He said to prosecute these criminals, you'd need international cooperation, and even then, these crooks know what they're doing. They change addresses, phone numbers and stories all the time.
"You have an unknown defendant, unknown location. You don't even know who you're looking for," Murphy said.
Kennedy just hopes other loving grandparents don't fall for the same thing.
Kennedy lost $5,000 in that deal. The county attorney said as if what happened isn't bad enough, he's confident the crooks will call Kennedy back and try to get him again. Crooks know if they can get you once they can probably get you twice.
In many cases, when you answer the phone, scammers say Grandpa, and then wait for you to say your grandchild's name. Or they use the Internet, Facebook and other means to find names of your relatives. If you get this call, don't fall for it.