Warrant

Yesterday, when I was home, sick in bed, we received two recorded calls. There’s nothing unusual in that – we receive a lot of sales calls during the day. I slept through one, the other woke me up. I didn’t answer it, of course. We never answer the phone unless we recognize the name on Caller ID. If it’s important, they’ll leave a message. The vast majority of the time, there is no message. Sometimes, it’s a sales call. Sometimes, it’s a political call. (Personally, I don’t mind the political calls.)

These two calls yesterday were especially nasty – the lowest of the low. Both were from the same number, and left the same recorded message each time. A stern, male voice said: “This is Officer Blanchette, with the IRS. We have a warrant for your arrest, linked to this address. It is important that you contact us immediately.”

I didn’t believe it for a second, of course. If I did have any doubt, however, the call would have raised many red flags. Why would the IRS have a phone number listed as “Unassigned” on Caller ID? If the warrant is linked to an address, why not just come over and arrest whoever the warrant is for? And who is the warrant for, anyway? – There are two of us here who go by “your”.

The odd thing was, Officer Blanchette didn’t leave a contact number.

The truly sad thing about this is that I am sure there are people out there who believe they are about to be arrested by the IRS.

Out of curiosity, I did an internet search for the phone number listed on Caller ID. The number is an unlisted business (of course), and is located in the desert outside of Winter, Texas. (Now I understand why Officer Blanchette didn’t just deliver the warrant: It’s a long drive from Winter, Texas, and pickup trucks don’t get great gas mileage.) I read comments on a couple of those “Who’s Calling Me” web sites. A few people commented that they had been notified of arrest warrants. Several people, however, commented that they’d been notified, from the same number, that they’d won a cruise to The Bahamas.

It makes me happy that the IRS is giving away cruises to The Bahamas. It makes me sad that I didn’t win one.

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7 thoughts on “Warrant

      • There are other resources which have info about scams, including AARP, the American Association of Retired Persons. Many banks and credit unions are involved in dissuading elderly persons from getting money orders to pay false bills, since the callers require untraceable payments. I know of cases where an elderly person would not listen to family members but a bank officer was able to tell them that they were being scammed.

  1. We get about a half dozen of those every year, it seems. The first time was creepy and worrisome because it felt like we were being specifically targeted but since then I find them pretty humorous because half the time the pretend IRS officials sound like they just joined Toastmasters. But Valarie’s certainly right about the risk to the elderly, among other vulnerable populations. It’s a real problem.

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