One cannot say the IRS scam is back, as it never left. Scammers remain where the pickings continue to be good.

Apparently, there are those among us who are ripe to be plucked.

I personally received two IRS scam calls last week. I see that these people have become so lazy they don’t even participate personally in their own scam.

It’s all done by robo calls and a recording, telling the target they have a pending case and telling them they will suffer bank and property forfeitures if they do not call a given telephone number and arrange a settlement.

In this way, particularly as hundreds of thousands of rob calls are made nationally, the scammers need only sit back and wait for the most gullible among us to call them.

What a racket!

How normal people of average intelligence can fall for scams such as this continues to amaze me, as they are so obviously phony. Can people really be this dense?

The IRS reminds the public they can easily know when a supposed IRS caller is fake. While we’ve gone over these before, these hints are worth repeating. There are six primary things the IRS will never do that scammers always do. Watch for these. The IRS will never:

  • Call to demand immediate payment, nor will they call about your taxes without first having mailed you a bill.
  • Demand that you pay taxes without first giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
  • Require you to use a specific payment method for taxes, such a prepaid debit card. Only a scammer will do this.
  • Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone.
  • Threaten to bring in local police or other law enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
  • Use a recording to advise you of taxes owed or to demand payment. Any recording is a sure scam.

If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS asking for money, do the following:

  • If you owe taxes or think you might owe, call the IRS at 800-829-1040. Legitimate IRS workers can help youwith a payment issue.
  • If you know you don’t owe taxes, report the incident to the Treasure Inspector General for tax administration at 800-366-4484, or simply hang up.

Because of the digital world in which we live, I would be remiss not to mention that the IRS will never use unsolicited email, text messages or any other social media to address your personal tax issue.

Seasonal thefts

All categories of theft have seasons during which the crime is more prevalent.

During the holiday season, robberies, theft from persons and vehicle and residential burglaries occur at higher rates, largely due to the influx of money-laden shoppers and purchases left in vehicles and homes in plain view. Prevention is the key to lowering one’s chances of being victimized. Take it, Lock it, Hide it!

During the summer months, property crimes such as identity theft, vehicle theft, residential and vehicle burglaries all increase. This is due to many variables, including vacationers leaving residences unoccupied, an increased number of outdoor activities and marauding, unsupervised youngsters seeking thrills or easy money.

Prevention is the answer to these crimes as well. House sitters, neighborhood watch programs, police home checks and vigilant neighbors are key to preventing property crimes.

Assaults

Twelve assaults were reported to police this week. Of these, seven involved family violence.

  • An assault with bodily injury/family violence was reported July 4 in the 2500 block of Meadow Lane.
  • An aggravated assault with a deadly weapon was reported July 5 in the 500 block of Washington Avenue.
  • An assault by contact/family violence was reported July 5 in the 3000 block of Lois Circle.
  • An assault with bodily injury/family violence was reported July 6 in the 300 block of Lois Circle.
  • An assault causing bodily injury was reported July 6 in the 1200 block of East Business U.S. Highway 190.
  • An assault with bodily injury was reported July 7 in the 2000 block of East U.S. Business Highway 190.
  • An assault by contact/family violence was reported July 8 in the 100 block of Sheila Court.
  • An assault with bodily injury/family violence was reported July 8 in the 500 block of West Washington Avenue.
  • A robbery and assault with bodily injury were reported July 8 in the 500 block of Sunset Lane.
  • An assault with bodily injury was reported July 9 in the 9000 block of Traci Drive.
  • An assault with bodily injury/family violence was reported July 10 in the 2400 block of Isabelle Drive.
  • An assault with bodily injury/family violence was reported July 10 in the 200 block of Pinto Drive.

Theft/burglary

Fifteen thefts/burglaries were reported this week. This number seems to be the new norm.

  • The theft of a firearm was reported July 4 in the 2000 block of Jake Drive. Stolen firearms are worrisome, in that they are frequently used in other crimes.
  • The unauthorized use of a vehicle (theft) was reported July 6 in the 1200 block of Katelynn Circle.
  • A theft less than $100 was reported July 6 in the 100 block of West Avenue D.
  • A Dodge Durango valued at $4,500 was reported stolen July 6 in the 1200 block of Phil Avenue.
  • An attempted burglary of a residence was reported July 6 on Walnut Drive.
  • A theft less than $100 was reported July 6 in the 1300 block of Elke Circle.
  • A theft of currency between $100 and $700 was reported July 6 in the 200 block of Cove Terrace.
  • A burglary of a residence was reported July in the 2000 block of East U.S. Business Highway 190.
  • The theft of license plates and criminal mischief were reported July 7 in the 900 block of South 17th Street.
  • A theft of currency was reported July 7 in the 1200 block of South 19th Street.
  • The burglary of a vehicle was reported July 8 in the 2100 block of Merle Drive.
  • A theft under $100 was reported July 8 in the 1300 block of South Farm-to-Market 116.
  • A burglary of a vehicle was reported July 8 in the 2100 block of Jake Drive.
  • A theft between $100 and $700 was reported July 8 in the 2900 block of East U.S. Business Highway 190. A theft was reported July 9 in the 1100 block of Golf Course Road.
  • A theft of video games was reported July 10 in the 4200 block of Primrose Road.

Other crimes

  • Fraudulent use/possession of identifying information was reported July 4 in the 1100 block of Golf Course Road.
  • Criminal mischief was reported July 4 in the 2200 block of East U.S. Business Highway 190.
  • Reckless damage was reported July 4 in the 100 block of G.R. Hinson Parkway.
  • Reckless damage was reported July 4 in the 1400 block of Georgetown Road.
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a prohibited weapon was reported July 5 in the 200 block of West Reagan Avenue.
  • Online impersonation was reported July 5.
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia was reported July 5 in the 1200 block of North Main Street.
  • A handgun was found July 6 inn the 1100 block of South 23rd Street.
  • Fraudulent use/possession of identifying information was reported July 6 in the 1100 bock of Timmons Drive.
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia was reported July 6 in the 12000 block of Katelynn Circle.
  • A handgun was found July 6 in the 2600 block of Sunflower Trail.
  • Fraudulent use/possession of identifying information was reported July 7 in the 500 block of Curry Avenue.
  • Harassment by phone was reported July 7 in the 1400 block of Linda Lane.
  • Criminal mischief was reported July 7 in the 100 block of South 13th Street.
  • Invasive visual recording was reported July 9 in the 300 block of Janelle Drive.
  • Possession of a controlled substance was reported July 9 in the 700 block of Mary Street.
  • Criminal mischief was reported July 10 in the 600 block of Bermuda Street.
  • Discharge of a firearm in city limits was reported July 10 in the 100 block of Cedar Grove Loop. What goes up must come down.

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