Police warn of fake-cop phone scam

Homer Police issued a warning this week of a new phone scam that hits close to home: the caller claims to an “assistant chief” from the Homer Police Department and even has a caller ID showing the call is from police.

That’s what a scam artist did on Tuesday when a South Peninsula Hospital employee received a call at work from a man saying a federal warrant would be issued for his arrest due to a lawsuit associated with the man’s Social Security number. The man said to call a different phone number to arrange payment by credit card so the warrant would not be issued. The worker called police — the real cops.

“It came across as fairly believable, but this guy was smart enough to call us and check it out,” said Homer Police Chief Mark Robl.

Robl said the scam is common in the Lower 48 states. Robl said that if anyone else is approached with the scam, they should call Homer Police at 235-3150. Police caution people to be cautious when dealing with suspicious phone calls and to never give out credit card or other personal information without verifying the identity and legitimacy of the caller.