Phone scams soliciting money for injured and fallen fire fighter - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Phone scams soliciting money for injured and fallen fire fighters

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
RANKIN COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Bogus attempts to get your money are now targeting more residents in Rankin County. This bold phone scam says it's raising money for firefighters, and county officials want you to be warned.

"To prey on citizens to try and raise money for someone like Noah and his family it absolutely, it infuriates me," said Rankin County Emergency Operations Center Director Mike Word.

Scammers are calling Rankin County residents asking for donations to help fallen and injured firefighters like Noah Pate. The bogus efforts are especially heartbreaking after the Richland firefighter's tragic death in July.

The con artists are so bold that Wednesday morning a robocall came into the Rankin County Emergency Operations Center requesting cash for volunteer firefighters in the county. 

"They asked if we could give money. I said absolutely we can and I offered to give them$50.00 which was their highest amount and at that point in time when I confirmed I would give them money it rolled over to an actual live person," said Word.

The caller then asked for a mailing address to send an envelope for the $50.00 check. No money was sent.

Thursday the EOC director tried to call the number that showed up on the caller id. It was disconnected.

Officials warn residents receiving those calls not to make any contributions.

The 15 volunteer departments and their 430 volunteer firefighters, as well as the five career departments, are fully funded. Just last week Rankin County EOC received a new $245,000.00 engine/pumper truck for the Lake Harbor Fire Department.

The rural department's new addition holds 3,000 gallons and pumps 1,250 gallons of water a minute.

"We are not out soliciting funds and this is absolutely a scam, and please do not fall into this trap," added Word.

So far at least one person has reported being taken for $50.00.

The Attorney General's office is investigating this and a second scam claiming to raise money for the Mississippi Fire Fighters Association.

Word says Mississippi's reputation as a charitable state makes it vulnerable when residents believe they would be helping firefighters like Noah and his family.

"If the citizens here in Rankin county receive these calls just hang up," said Word. "Do not fall prey to this".

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