Local business woman turns tables on Ameren scammers

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by Alissa Reitmeier / News 4

KMOV.com

Posted on March 21, 2014 at 10:59 PM

Updated Saturday, Mar 22 at 12:00 AM

(KMOV)- Katie Lee was in the middle of a busy lunch shift at her restaurant when a manager told her she had an urgent call on the line. The caller said he was from the Ameren UE billing department and if she didn’t fork over $2,000 within two hours her diners would be in the dark.

“They were like you have until 2:00 and then the whole restaurant is just shut off so at the time I knew I had paid my bill,” Lee said.

The scammers were persistent that the restaurant’s bill was long past due and had continued to grow.

“They wanted them to go and get a money order or onto a check card and call them back with the information. Well she didn't do that,” said Rock Hill Police Sgt. Kevin Clinton.

Instead, she decided to play along. She called the company back while phoning the police.

“So when I called the number back they just picked up and they said ‘Ameren billing,’” Lee explained.

She was transferred to the “payment department,” gathering information—even suggesting they meet up in person to pay. It wasn’t until police arrived that she revealed she was on to them.

“Sometimes when someone is trying to take $2,000 from you and you work so hard for your money you just get upset and you want to call them back and let them know you know what you're up to and you can't do this to me,” Lee said.

 

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