Student loses thousands in phone scam; then teased by thief

Published: Mar. 28, 2018 at 11:04 PM EDT
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An old phone scam claims a new victim but this one has an unexpected twist.

A local college student says she was duped out of thousands of dollars by someone claiming to be from the IRS.

“It did come up as a ‘517’ number, so I listened to the voicemail and it sounded just like a professional recording”, that’s what Savannah Schow says about the voice message that turned her life up-side-down.

Calling the number back proved to be a big mistake.

“They said yes, the reason we called is because you have miscalculations on your taxes”, said Schow.

The 20-year-old says she panicked when the caller told her she owed $3,684 and if she didn't come up with the money, then she would be arrested.

“They said right now you have a warrant out for your arrest and they said you can not disconnect the line or it will automatically activate the police and they'll be over to arrest you”, explained Schow.

The caller then told her she needed to electronically transfer the money.

“He said you need to go buy four $500 google play gift cards”, said Schow.

But the scam didn't stop there.

The caller requested another $500 gift card, taking a total of $2,500.

When all of the money was transferred, the caller taunted Schow through text messages, teasing her about the scam.

“I'm very upset and devastated, you know I just lost everything I had”, said Schow.

When Cryss Walker from News 10 tried calling the scammer back, no one answered.

The IRS says the agency will never call you about any tax related matters, and will never ask for any payments over the phone.

If you get one of these calls, hang up.

If you think you've been scammed, you can file a complaint with the state attorney general's office.

We have provided a link with this story to file an IRS scam claim.