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Monday, May 20, 2024

Berthoud Police Blotter: April 2024

April 1 – 7

Monday, April 1

Warrant Arrest: Highway 287/County Road 4E – A juvenile female was contacted for speeding and found to have an outstanding warrant. She was booked at the Larimer County Hub.

Attempted Motor vehicle Trespass: Skimmer Street – A woman woke and saw the driver’s door to her 2005 Ford F350 was ajar. The truck was parked on the street in front of the residence and upon reviewing security cameras, a suspect vehicle parked alongside the F350 before the suspect tried to engage the ignition. The truck was unable to be stolen, as it had been severely damaged from the previous three times it was stolen. If anyone has any surveillance videos, please contact the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office Berthoud Squad.

Lost Property: Urban Place – A female resident reported that she lost her pink leather cardholder wallet with her identification inside. If anyone has any information, please contact the Larimer County Sheriff’s Office Berthoud substation.

Tuesday, April 2

Driving Under Revocation/Warrant Arrest: Willow Drive/Evergreen Avenue – A male driver was stopped after an Automatic License Plate Reader alerted to an outstanding warrant and for traffic offenses. He was found to have a revoked driver’s license and had warrants issued for his arrest. He was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Driving Under the Influence/Driving Under Revocation/Speeding: 1st Street/Turner Avenue – A man was contacted for speeding and found to be driving under the influence of alcohol and without a valid driver’s license. He was booked at the Larimer County Jail after he failed to perform roadside maneuvers in a manner consistent with sobriety.

Wednesday, April 3

Fraud: Wagon Bend Road – A woman said she was offered a job online. She said the “employer” sent her a check with instructions to deposit the check, hold $271, and send $1909 in cash to an address in California. The female realized this was an attempt to defraud her and was not out any money.

Felony Warrant Arrest: Mountain Avenue- A man was contacted with an outstanding Felony Warrant and booked into the Larimer County Jail.

Thursday, April 4

Fatal Motor Vehicle Accident: Highway 287/North Berthoud Parkway – A three wheeled motorcycle and a work truck collided at this intersection. The male driver of the motorcycle was pronounced deceased, and the female passenger was taken to the hospital for serious bodily injuries. The male driver of the truck was uninjured. The CRASH (Crash Reconstruction and Scene Handling) Team was called to the scene to perform a full investigation.

Friday, April 5

Trespass: Mountain Avenue – A female was contacted in the parking lot after taking several food items from a local business without paying. The female returned all items and was formally trespassed from the business and a trespass notice was issued.

Non-Injury Motor Vehicle Accident: North Hwy 287/Berthoud Parkway – A three-vehicle accident occurred at the intersection after the driver of one of the vehicles ran a red light while traveling North on Berthoud Parkway. No injuries were reported, and the driver of the at-fault vehicle was issued a summons.

Felony Possession with Intent to Distribute (Fentanyl)/Felony Possession of Cocaine/Possession of Drug Paraphernalia/Unlawful Possession of Another’s Identification: East Highway 56 – An adult male was contacted while passed out at the wheel of a vehicle while parked in a business parking lot. On contact, drug paraphernalia was in plain view. A search of the vehicle yielded 171 M30 (Fentanyl) pills, 5.6 grams of cocaine, approximately $750 in cash, and other indicia of drug distribution. The man was booked into jail.

Violation of a Protection Order: 7th Street – A female reported and provided a video showing her ex, who is restrained from her, being on her property. The investigation is ongoing.

Saturday, April 6

Violation of a Protection Order x2/Domestic Violence: 7th Street – The man from the previous day’s incident was contacted and provided a written statement as well as a full confession. He was booked into the Larimer County Jail on two Violations of a Protection Order. Victim Rights Advocates were offered to the victim, who declined.

Sunday, April 7

Warrant Arrest x2: East Highway 56 – A female was contacted with two outstanding warrants. She was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Hit and Run Motor Vehicle Accident/Careless Driving: Southwind Road – A vehicle was traveling southbound in a neighborhood through a curve and ran into a fire hydrant and other objects in the new construction area. The vehicle came to rest on the sidewalk causing heavy damage to the front right with all airbags deployed. A man was contacted after he was seen walking away from the vehicle and was later identified as the registered owner.

SCAM BUSTERS

Voice Cloning: If a call sounds like your boss (asking for bank account numbers) or your family member (begging for help in an emergency), you are more likely to act. That is why scammers use voice cloning to make their requests for money or information more believable. Make sure you call the person back with a known number to verify if the request is legitimate or just a swindle.

RECEIVE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON YOUR CELL PHONE. Please visit https://NOCOAlert.org and register to get emergency notifications on your cell phone. Reverse 911 does not work on cell phones, only on landlines. Berthoud has the lowest registered numbers in Larimer County.

April 8 – 14

Monday, April 8

Recovered Stolen Vehicle: North County Road 15C/County Road 10E – A stolen gold F250, with no plates, was recovered abandoned. The vehicle was processed on scene and towed.

Fraud: 4th Street – A woman provided her identifying information to a potential employer through an online employment site. When the potential employer asked for her banking information the woman realized the swindle and contacted law enforcement.

Tuesday, April 9

Fraud/Theft: Ten Gallon Drive – A woman reported she believed she was speaking to Apple Support and provided a scammer with $4955 worth of gift cards. The caller had her on the phone for six hours.

Motor Vehicle Accident/Driving Under the Influence/Resisting Arrest/Obstruction/False Reporting/Minor in Possession of Alcohol/Criminal Mischief/No Proof of Insurance: Mountain Avenue/1st Street – A 19-year-old female called 911 to report that her “friend” crashed her car and was intoxicated. Multiple other callers reported a motor vehicle accident with a single occupant. The crashed vehicle came to a stop on top of a large, raised center median. The female driver was so intoxicated she was unable to complete standardized field sobriety tests. At one point, the woman pulled away from the arresting deputy and loaded her arm for a punch, she was quickly controlled. The woman was uncooperative, physically resisted, and threatened deputies and paramedics. After being medically cleared at the hospital she was booked in at the Larimer County Jail.

Wednesday, April 10

Shoplifting: Berthoud – A 13-year-old-male was cited for shoplifting from a local business in Berthoud. Parents and the School Resource Officer were notified.

Felony Warrant Arrest x2: Longs Peak Avenue – Flock cameras alerted to a vehicle registered to a man with two outstanding felony warrants. Deputies contacted the registered owner of the vehicle, and he was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Driving Under the Influence/Open Container/Blocking Roadway: South Highway 287/County Road 8 – A Chevrolet Suburban was found at a complete stop in a lane of travel on the roadway with a male driver slumped over in the driver’s seat. The vehicle was running and the transmission in drive. Freshly burnt marijuana was seen from outside the vehicle, and the odor of alcohol was detected from outside of the driver’s door. Tire spikes were deployed in front of the vehicle’s tires if the driver tried to drive away. The male driver did wake up before cover deputies arrived and began to drive away, running over the spikes. After the tires were deflated, the man stopped and had to be physically removed from the car. He was placed into custody for driving under the influence and was booked uncooperative into the Larimer County Jail. Thank you to the Loveland Police Department for their quick response and assistance!

Warrant Arrest: Mount Meeker Avenue – A woman was arrested on an active misdemeanor warrant after she called in a disturbance. She was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Theft: Nicholson Street – A man reported he sold a set of wheels on Facebook Marketplace for $425. A man picked up the wheels and forgot to pay. The man arranged to drop off the payment but never did, and then blocked the seller from communicating with him via phone and social media. A warrant is being sought for his arrest for the theft of the wheels.

Thursday, April 11

Fraud/Theft: Torreys Peak Lane: A man was contacted by a scammer who claimed to be “JENNIFER LOVE HEWITT”. The scammer convinced the man to send $1,800 in gift cards. The scammer also sent the man a fraudulent check of $20,000, so he could deposit it into his account and begin the process for buying “JENNIFER” a house in Colorado. The check was intercepted by a real estate company and confirmed to be fake.

Trespass/Theft: Mountain Avenue – A business reported an unidentified man dumped used tires at the business. The investigation is ongoing.

Vehicle Theft/Crime Against At-Risk Adult: Gateway Park Lane – An elderly woman reported a man stole her black Mercedes C24. The vehicle was entered as stolen.

Warrant Arrest x4: Sioux Drive – Two individuals were reported causing a disturbance. The woman was apprehended and booked on three felony warrants and one misdemeanor warrant.

Unattended Death: East Iowa Avenue – An elderly hospice patient on palliative care passed in her sleep. The coroner was notified

Friday, April 12

Harassment/Domestic Violence/Mental Health: Shelby Drive – A woman was reported by her husband as having a mental health crisis and was screaming at her entire family. Through an in-depth investigation, the woman was arrested for harassment and domestic violence against her husband. She was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Warrant Arrest/Driving Under Revocation: Berthoud Parkway/Mountain Avenue – A man was contacted after a Flock camera alerted on his vehicle for an outstanding warrant. He was arrested for Driving Under Revocation and the warrant.

Criminal Mischief/Suspicious Circumstances: West Interstate 25 Frontage Road – A fence was cut near the Serenity Housing Development which has had repeat issues of bonfire parties in the area. The property security found a game camera that was likely placed there by the perpetrators and found wood pallets stockpiled in the area making it seem as if the subjects are preparing for another party this weekend.

Saturday, April 13

Warrant Arrest x2/Drug Paraphernalia/Theft/Trespass: 3rd Street – Employees at a local business called to report that a woman had shoplifted several items and that they had followed her to a construction site nearby. She was contacted and identified. She returned the items but was found to have five outstanding warrants. Drug paraphernalia was found on her person after arrest. She was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Sunday, April 14

Traffic: Bennet Road – Several individuals were attempting to drop off a recently purchased bus at the top of Bennet Road. The bus broke down while trying to turn around. While waiting for the heavy wrecker, another vehicle towing a trailer got stuck in the ditch, making the roadway impassable. Between the wrecker and neighbors, all vehicles were removed from the scene.

Theft: Mountain Avenue – A woman reported that an employee stole one hundred dollars from the business while on duty. The employee admitted the theft.

RECEIVE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON YOUR CELL PHONE. Please visit https://NOCOAlert.org and register to get emergency notifications on your cell phone. Reverse 911 does not work on cell phones, only on landlines. Berthoud has the lowest registered numbers in Larimer County.

April 15 – 21

Monday, April 15

Driving Under the Influence of Drugs: Highway 56/County Road 5 – A deputy observed an abandoned single-vehicle motor vehicle accident in the area. The vehicle had several empty alcohol containers inside. Deputies contacted the registered owner nearby and he admitted to consuming alcohol and marijuana before blacking out. He was arrested and taken to the hospital, where he was released on a summons.

Suspicious Circumstances: Franklin Avenue – A mandatory reporter with a care and rehabilitation facility in Berthoud called to report one of their patients said a Certified Nursing Assistant was rough in handling her during care and left the patient naked for an extended period. An in-house investigation was reportedly done by the facility.

Abandoned Vehicle: South Highway 287 – A Nissan XTERRA was left abandoned on South Highway 287. The contact with the registered owner was attempted and the vehicle was towed.

Tuesday, April 16

Fictitious Tags: County Road 8/Dorothy Drive – A driver displayed a photocopied registration tab on the license plate. The tab was seized, and a summons issued.

Missing and Located Runaway Juvenile: Berthoud – A chronic runaway juvenile ran away again with her boyfriend on Friday of last week. Both juveniles were found, and the girl was told to go home.

Wednesday, April 17

Fraud: West County Road 10E – A local business reported a business check was washed and tried to be cashed for $3,286.17. A possible suspect has been identified and the Sheriff’s Office is currently waiting on surveillance footage from the bank to positively identify the suspect.

Resisting Arrest/Obstructing a Peace Officer/Warrant Arrest x3 (2xFelony/1xMisdemeanor): 4th Street/ Water Avenue – A male was seen driving in an RV camper and was known to have warrants. The man resisted being placed under arrest and attempted to run away after fighting with a deputy. The man surrendered when a conducted energy weapon was presented. Neither the man nor the deputy sustained any injuries and the man was booked at the Larimer County Jail on his existing warrants and two new charges.

Cold Burglary/Suspicious Circumstances: 4th Street – A woman reported someone broke into her home and stole her prescribed pain medication, but nothing else. There were no signs of forced entry and all ring video for the home was suspiciously unavailable. The scene was processed for evidence of a crime.

Thursday, April 18

Scam: South Iowa Avenue – A woman reported she was defrauded out of $300 through Facebook when a scammer identified herself as a “friend of the family” and “sold” a puppy to her.

Trespass Notice: Mountain Avenue – A man was called in by the staff of a local church for causing a disturbance. Staff requested the man be removed and formally trespassed. As a deputy arrived on the scene, the man began verbally threatening and walking towards the deputy with a full gas can. After a brief standoff, the man complied with orders and put down the gasoline can. He was verbally deescalated and found to be having a mental health episode. A formal trespass notice was issued and signed.

Friday, April 19

Domestic Disturbance: Longs Peak Avenue – A man called to report a disturbance with his girlfriend. A primary aggressor and probable cause could not be established for charges. The man said his handgun was missing somewhere in the residence. The woman did not know the handgun’s location.

Warrant Arrest: Highway 287/Berthoud Parkway – A woman was contacted with an outstanding misdemeanor warrant and booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Saturday, April 20

Motor Vehicle Accident with Injuries: South Highway 287 – A woman lost control of her vehicle while changing lanes due to road conditions and slid into a ditch. The woman was assisted out of the vehicle, and only sustained minor injuries. The vehicle was towed due to disabling damage.

Juvenile Runaway: Berthoud – A juvenile female was reported as a runaway since 04/12/24 and has not returned home. Her boyfriend was contacted and the girl was returned home. The boyfriend and his father were warned of possible legal and criminal consequences if they continued to harbor a runaway minor.

Sunday, April 21

Nothing of Significance to Note

Scambusters

Did someone send you to a Bitcoin ATM? It is a swindle

Is there a legitimate reason for someone to send you to a Bitcoin ATM? The short answer is NO. Will someone from the government send you to a Bitcoin ATM? NEVER.

Scammers succeed because they are good at what they do — which is lying. So, if someone calls and says you have to act now because your money is at risk, you might listen if they are convincing. They will scare you into keeping it a secret — even from your closest loved ones. Once they have you alarmed and alone, they will give you the solution to the problem they just created: “Protect your money by moving it”. And that is when they will send you to a Bitcoin ATM to “secure” your money. “Problem” solved? Not even close.

That is because neither Bitcoin nor the ATM will protect your money. In fact, no cryptocurrency will. No matter what the caller says, there is no such thing as a government Bitcoin account or digital wallet. There are no Bitcoin federal safety lockers. Only a scammer will give you a QR code to “help” you deposit your life savings in a Bitcoin ATM.

What they are doing is trying to rush you into something you cannot reverse.

RECEIVE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON YOUR CELL PHONE. Please visit https://NOCOAlert.org and register to get emergency notifications on your cell phone. Reverse 911 does not work on cell phones, only on landlines. Berthoud has the lowest registered numbers in Larimer County.

April 22 – 28

Monday, April 22

Criminal Mischief: Meadowlark Lane – An early 2000s dark blue Ford pickup truck rammed through a locked gate at the Berthoud Bike Park, causing damage to the gate, to do a burnout in the parking lot.

Hit and Run Motor Vehicle Accident: Prairiestar Drive/Cooperland Boulevard – A Silver GMC Sierra truck was seen driving over landscape rocks and a street sign after going straight over the roundabout.

Hit and Run Motor Vehicle Accident/Reckless Driving/Failure to Notify Police of an Accident/Operated an Uninsured Vehicle on a Public Highway/Failed to Give Information or Aid After Damaging Another Vehicle: Highway 287/County Road 10E – A male driver and a red Kia Rio were traveling northbound on Highway 287 when the Kia deliberately drove into the man’s vehicle as they were traveling at 71 mph. Information from the Weld County Sheriff’s Office found the registered owner of the Kia Rio is currently living out of his car. Several attempts were made to contact the man and a warrant is currently being sought for his arrest.

Tuesday, April 23

Burglary: Bruce Drive – A woman reported that somebody entered her garage and took her wallet from her car. The woman initially received a call from her bank informing her of fraudulent charges on her business credit card. At the time of this report, at least four separate charges were made on different cards at Walmart and King Soopers. Ring video from the area showed a man subject attempting to gain access to unlocked cars overnight. The scene was processed, and the investigation is currently ongoing.

Wednesday, April 24

Motor Vehicle Accident with No Injuries: Mountain Avenue – A female driver backed into another car in a business parking lot. Minor damage was sustained to the vehicles. Both drivers exchanged insurance information.

Trespassing: 2nd Street – A woman was contacted at a residence that she was recently evicted from. She said she had permission to be there, but a phone call to the owner, proved differently. She was issued a trespass notice and released from the scene.

Warrant Arrest x2/Possession of Drug Paraphernalia: South Highway 287/Horseshoe Circle – A male and female were contacted in a white minivan pulled over off the side of Highway 287 and were contacted on a welfare check. Drug paraphernalia was in plain view and both parties were detained. The female was found to have two outstanding warrants for her arrest and was booked at the Larimer County Jail. Drug paraphernalia was collected for destruction.

Detox Hold/Mental Health: Tranquility Way – An adult male called himself in for a detox hold. The man was heavily intoxicated and said that he took apart a .22 caliber weapon in his room because he was also feeling suicidal. The man was transported by ambulance to the hospital and placed on a detox hold.

Thursday, April 25

Drove Under the Influence of Drugs/Unlawful Possession of Fentanyl/Drove Vehicle When License Under Restraint: 6th Street – A female driver was called in as a Report Every Drunk Driver Immediately (REDDI) report for swerving. The vehicle was found on the side of the road and the driver was slumped over in the driver’s seat. Once the driver was cleared by medical staff, she was placed under arrest and booked at the Larimer County Jail for Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID) and driving without a valid license. A partially smoked blue pill suspected to be a blue M30 Fentanyl pill wrapped in aluminum foil was found on the front driver-side floor of the vehicle.

Friday, April 26

Unlawful Possession of Controlled Substance x2/Warrant Arrest: Mountain Avenue – A woman was stopped for a traffic offense with a male and a female as passengers. The male was found to have a warrant. K9 sniff and vehicle search yielded 5.48 grams of methamphetamine in the man’s backpack and .45cc of liquid methamphetamine belonging to the driver. She was issued a summons and the man was booked into the Larimer County Jail.

Felony Warrant Arrest: Mountain Avenue – A man was contacted and arrested on his felony warrant, stemming from the ongoing harassment/stalking case involving local law enforcement agencies.

Lost Property: Mountain Avenue – A man reported he lost a gold wedding ring last week.

Saturday, April 27

Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle: Berthoud – At approximately 0030 hours, a male juvenile took a vehicle without permission to pick up a friend in Fort Collins. The vehicle overheated and the juvenile left it on the side of the road. The juvenile gave deputies the location of the vehicle and it was recovered. The juvenile was issued a juvenile summons and released to his father.

Driving Under the Influence: County Road 44 – A man was contacted driving under the influence of alcohol. He was later released on a summons.

Warrant Arrest: Highway 287/County Road 2 – A man was stopped for traffic infractions and found to have a warrant for his arrest. He was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Sunday, April 28

Violation of a Protection Order: West County Road 14 – A warrant was issued for a man who violated a restraining order

Scambusters

What is a verification code and why would someone ask me for it?

When you log into your bank or credit card account, you might get a text message or email with a verification code. You then enter it at the login screen to confirm it is you. That is a form of two-factor authentication that adds a layer of security to your account and keeps would-be scammers and hackers out.

Your account password and a verification code work together, like the lock on your doorknob and a deadbolt lock. If you unlock the doorknob but not the deadbolt, you can’t get in. Likewise, if you know the account password but not the verification code, you can’t get in.

The same goes for scammers trying to get into your account. To break into your account, scammers need both keys. That’s why they try to trick you into sharing your verification code.

Scammers pretend to be someone you can trust and say they have discovered a problem with one of your accounts — or that someone is using your identity. They may know some things about you and sound very convincing. They may even be very sympathetic to your problem: offering to help you set things right … and then asking for your verification code to get into your account.

If you give them the code, they can log into your account and transfer all the money out of your savings or investment accounts.

Never give your verification code to someone else. It is only for you to log into your account. Anyone who asks you for your account verification code is a scammer.

If someone asks you for your verification code, do not engage. Hang up. Block their number. Stop texting them.

RECEIVE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON YOUR CELL PHONE. Please visit https://NOCOAlert.org and register to get emergency notifications on your cell phone. Reverse 911 does not work on cell phones, only on landlines. Berthoud has the lowest registered numbers in Larimer County.

April 29 – May 5

Monday, April 29

Driving Under Revocation/No Proof of Insurance/Traffic Infraction: Highway 287/42nd Street: A female driver was stopped for suspicious driving behavior. She was found to be driving under revocation for a previous DUI charge and had no proof of insurance. A positive K9 alert found drug paraphernalia.

Criminal Mischief: Welch Avenue – Graffiti was reported on a Town of Berthoud building, in addition to several broken windows on the southwest corner of the building.

Tuesday, April 30

Warrant Arrest: North County Road 23/Soaring Peaks Drive – A male driver was stopped for traveling 66 miles per hour in a 50-mile-per-hour zone. /The driver was found to have a warrant for his arrest from Adams County Sheriff’s Office. He was booked in at the Larimer County Jail.

Warrant Arrest: Highway 287 – A man was contacted while walking along Highway 287 and was found to have a warrant for his arrest. He was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Cold Burglary: 1st Street – Two unknown male suspects broke into and stole items from two storage units early in the morning. The scene was processed for evidence. This investigation is ongoing.

Wednesday, May 1

Mental Health/Suicide Attempt: North Berthoud Parkway – A man was found at a local park after an alert went out that he may have ingested antifreeze in a suicide attempt. The man was found after drinking approximately a quart of antifreeze. He was taken by ambulance to the hospital and placed on a mental health hold.

Thursday, May 2

Assault/Domestic Violence: South Third Street – A male and female said they smoked methamphetamine the night before. When they got up at 1:15 p.m., the woman assaulted the man with her fists and a vape pen, causing pain and injury. She was taken to the Larimer County Jail where she was booked.

Felony Driving Under the Influence/Driving without Headlamps: South 5th Street/Colorado Avenue – A man was contacted for failing to display headlamps when required. The driver failed roadsides and was booked at the Larimer County Jail for Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol. It was found the driver had four previous DUI convictions.

Friday, May 3

Criminal Possession of a Financial Device/Warrant Arrest: 2nd Street- A man was contacted on an outstanding warrant for his arrest and was found to have a credit card not belonging to him in his pocket. He was booked at the Larimer County Jail.

Fraud: 8th Street – A man reported that he was defrauded out of $1,200 when he tried to buy a Schnauzer puppy on Facebook Marketplace. The man sent the money via PayPal and then never heard back from the seller after several attempts. The seller was determined to be a fraudster.

Saturday, May 4

Nothing of significance to note.

Sunday, May 5

Theft: County Road 14 – A man reported that an unknown individual opened his work truck unlocked toolboxes and took seven DeWalt cases containing approximately 650 sprinkler nozzles. The theft occurred sometime between 5 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. on Sunday. The approximate value of the stolen items is $2,000.

Mental Health Hold: Berthoud – A 9-year-old boy attempted to stab his stepmother with a knife at dinner, attacked and assaulted his 13-year-old brother, threatened to kill his family, and one month ago he tried to light the house on fire to kill his family. The juvenile was taken to the hospital and placed on a mental health hold.

Violation of a Protection Order x3/Driving Under Revocation: Curlew Drive – A man drove to his residence with a woman from whom he is restrained under three cases for domestic violence and stalking. The man was arrested and booked at the Larimer County Jail. Victim Advocates were notified for the woman.

Stolen Vehicle/Felony Vehicular Eluding: Highway 287/Mountain Avenue – An ALPR (Automatic License Plate Reader) alert for a stolen vehicle was received in the area of Mountain Avenue and Highway 287 on a stolen vehicle. A traffic stop was attempted and the vehicle in question fled. A pursuit was started but was stopped at Highway 287 and Highway 66 for public safety.

Scambusters

Let’s Talk about Spam Texts and Emails

When scammers send spam messages that seem legit (but are not), they are often trying to trick you into clicking links and giving them personal or financial information. Things like your passwords or bank account and Social Security numbers are valuable to scammers. With that access to your accounts, scammers could try to steal your money or your identity. Or both.

To help you cut down on spam and avoid scams:

  • Use filters. Your mobile phone probably has options to filter and block texts from unknown senders. Some wireless providers and call-blocking apps can also help block unwanted messages. Many popular email providers (like Gmail) have strong spam filters turned on by default. But if any spam gets into your inbox, mark it as spam or junk.
  • Protect your personal information. Before you enter personal information on a website, email, or text chain, stop. Ask yourself: Why do they need this information? And what is going to happen to it? Remember, too: never share your Social Security number with someone who reaches out to you.
  • Unsubscribe from unwanted emails. Getting fewer unwanted emails helps you avoid clicking on links that can lead to a phishing attack.
  • Report unwanted messages. Unwanted messages often lead to swindles. Report them. Use your phone’s “report junk” option or forward unwanted texts to 7726 (SPAM) and unwanted emails to your email provider.

Scammers pretend to be someone you can trust and say they have discovered a problem with one of your accounts — or that someone is using your identity. They may know some things about you and sound very convincing. They may even be very sympathetic to your problem: offering to help you set things right … and then asking for your verification code to get into your account.

If you give them the code, they can log into your account and transfer all the money out of your savings or investment accounts.

Never give your verification code to someone else. It is only for you to log into your account. Anyone who asks you for your account verification code is a scammer.

If someone asks you for your verification code, do not engage. Hang up. Block their number. Stop texting them.

RECEIVE EMERGENCY NOTIFICATIONS ON YOUR CELL PHONE. Please visit https://NOCOAlert.org and register to get emergency notifications on your cell phone. Reverse 911 does not work on cell phones, only on landlines. Berthoud has the lowest registered numbers in Larimer County.

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