FROM STAFF REPORTS
BURNET — Investigators sent out a warning to the public to avoid a phone scammer impersonating a Burnet police officer making threats of jail time over alleged “back taxes.”
The scam attempts might have become more complex, but the basic premise remains the same.
A crook tries to scare an unwitting victim into giving up their money via pre-paid cash card or with wired payment.
Don’t fall for it, officials said.
On March 24, Burnet Police Department administrators reported that a staff member fielded a complaint from a resident who said a caller identified herself as Jennifer Williams of the police department and attempted to collect a tax debt.
“No one from the police department will call asking for money,” Burnet Police Chief Paul Nelson said. “Any time they ask for you to send money on a card, Western Union, or something like that, that’s not legitimate.”
After posting the warning to the agency’s social media page, authorities also offered some advice.
“When you get calls just hang up on them,” Nelson said. “The longer they keep you on the line, the more you might accidentally give them too much information.”
There’s no need to try to retrieve the scammer’s phone number, which might be masked.
“Most of the time, they’re not calling from anywhere around here,” he said. “It’s a computer-generated number, so that’s why you can’t track them.”
To report problems or offer tips, call the Burnet Police Department at (512) 756-6404.