La Grande Police warn of scam targeting parents

By on Thursday, March 7th, 2024 in More Top Stories Northeastern Oregon News

LA GRANDE — The La Grande Police Department is issuing a scam alert following reports of a recent fraudulent activity targeting parents of Eastern Oregon University (EOU) students. 

Multiple incidents were reported between 2 AM and 3 AM on the morning of Wednesday, March 6, where parents received calls from someone claiming to be “Officer McDonald” from the EOU Campus Police Department. During the calls, parents were informed that their child had been detained for alcohol-related violations and were pressured to send money to the caller to prevent their child from being turned over to the police. Fortunately, all affected parents recognized the scam, did not send any money, and promptly reported the incident to the police after verifying with their children that it was a hoax. 

EOU says it wants to remind everyone that the university does not have a campus police department, and legitimate law enforcement agencies and campus safety do not solicit payments over the phone for releasing individuals from custody.

If anyone should receive one of these phone calls, La Grande Police ask that you please do the following:

1. Do not send money: Legitimate law enforcement agencies do not request payment over the phone for such matters.

2. Verify with your child: Contact your child directly to confirm their safety and well-being.

3. Report to the police: If you receive a suspicious call, report it immediately to the police. Timely reporting is crucial for ongoing investigations.

La Grande Police is actively investigating these incidents to identify the perpetrator(s) behind this scam. The department says it appreciates the cooperation of the affected parents and the community in bringing attention to this issue.