Scammers threatening people in Omaha with lawsuit, woman says

Imagine getting a call and the person on the other end says you will be sued unless you pay up.

The good news is that it’s all a scam.

Dozens of people around the metro have been getting calls just like this.

One Omaha woman almost fell for it, but says she followed her gut.

It was a voice mail that terrified Melissa Groves: "Please contact my avoid having any further legal action from being taken against you."

Groves says she didn't know what it was about, so she called the number back asking for the name left on the voicemail: Joseph White.

Groves was told it was regarding a loan she'd taken out a few years ago.

"The original loan was like for $300 I think she said, but now we owed over $4,000,” said Groves who said she doesn't remember taking out the loan.

She was told by the woman on the other end of the phone if she didn't pay up she'd be sued.

Groves thought the woman was telling the truth because "she had the last four digits of my social security number. She had the last four of my bank account number...I was beside myself, wracking my brain trying to figure out how am I going to take care of this?"

The woman told Groves the lawsuit would be dropped if she paid half of what she owed, but Groves still couldn't afford the $2,000.

"I was terrified. I had no idea what to do."

It was then that she decided to do some digging.

"As soon as I googled Joseph White a slew of bad scammer comments came up."

FOX 42 even tried calling the same number.

A man named William Patrick with client services answered the phone. After the reporter told the man who they were the man hung up.

Groves said, "It just sealed the deal right there that it was a scam."

It’s a scam that Groves now wants everyone to be aware of.

Groves said it isn't clear where the scammers got her information from. She says she does bank online, so it isn't clear if that is how it happened.

Some lawyers in Omaha have some tips on how to know if you really are being sued:

It can only be done in person or by certified mail, and it's called a summons. It must be served by a sheriff's deputy or court certified process server.

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