LANCASTER – Local authorities are warning the public about a phone scam that has been targeting residents in the Antelope Valley.
The scam starts with a phone call from a suspect pretending to have kidnapped the victim’s child. Victims are told if they do not pay a ransom, their child will be killed.
“In these incidences, the victims have immediately notified Lancaster Sheriff Station and their children were contacted and were safe. No kidnapping had taken place,” local officials said in an advisory.
The scam was attempted Tuesday afternoon when crooks called a bridal store in Quartz Hill. The scammer falsely claimed the shopkeeper’s daughter had been kidnapped and demanded a ransom, said Sgt. Dan Wolanski of the sheriff’s Lancaster Station.
The girl was located and was okay, Wolanski said.
“Please be aware of phone scams and immediately notify local law enforcement if you or your family are being threatened,” officials said in the advisory. “Always know where your children are, who they are with, and have a means of contact at all times.”
Visit https://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud to see a description of the most common phone scams, signs of a phone scam, and how to protect yourself from a phone scam.
You can also report threats and scams to the FBI directly by going to https://www.fbi.gov/report-threats-and-crime or calling 1-800-CALLFBI (225-5324) for the Major Case Contact Center.
[City News Service contributed to this report.]