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11 Investigates: Scammers Target Local Mom

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A Colorado Springs mom is frustrated that she keeps getting calls from a scammer.

Chaunel Howland says the crook claims to be with a law firm and says she owes a payday company $11,000. He told Howland if she doesn't pay immediately, he will have her arrested and thrown in jail.

Howland is worried worried because the scammer has a lot of her personal information.

"They sent me an email showing my name, my address, my date of birth, my Social Security number," said Howland.

The single mom tells 11 News she was filling out some paperwork online to refinance her car. It turns out the computer she was using didn't have a secure Internet connection. She says that's when she started getting calls and emails from scammers.

Now she's worried the crook might also steal her identity.

"It affects me long term. I'm a single mom of an almost going on 4-year-old so it scares me for the future. I mean you need credit for everything these days," said Howland.

We are getting talking to a local attorney about this scam.

Dave Webster, an attorney in Colorado Springs, says law firms do not usually get involved in collecting money.

"It's usually going to be a collections agency that will get involved in collections work. They will send you letters and generally each person will know about a debt that they owe," said Webster.

Webster says if you do get one of these calls, do some digging to see if the caller is legitimate.

"Ask them if you can call them back and get their number from them. And look up where they're supposedly from and find out if its actually a real law firm. If so call the law firm and ask if they have actually been soliciting these types of settlements," said Webster.

Webster tells 11 News even if you do owe the money, it is a civil matter and will ultimately be decided in court.


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