Phone Scam

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Meigs County Sheriff Keith O. Wood would like to warn citizens of recent popular phone scams. Wood reports that his office has been noticing that phone scams are on the rise in our area, and have received numerous calls about these scams, that are frequently focusing on the elderly.

A few of these phone scams include calls from individuals claiming to be from the Powerball Lottery, United States Department of Treasury, The Federal Reserve and IRS. During these calls an individual will promise large amount of money to the victim, once a smaller amount of money is paid to them, usually via an untraceable account such as a prepaid debit/credit card, Green Dot card, etc.

Sheriff Wood also advises that another popular scam, which has focused on the elderly involves someone calling and claiming to be a loved one stranded or in jail. During these types of scams victims will receive a call from an individual claiming to be a relative stating that he/she is in jail in another state and need bond money to be released or that they are stranded in another state or country attempting to get home. When the scammers state the relative is in Jail they request the money be sent in the form of a wire transfer, or again prepaid cards, to an account that the individual states belongs to the Jail, Police Department, or Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff Wood warns that this is NOT something that a Jail, Police Department, or any Sheriff’s Office would ask for.

Sheriff Wood also states that another popular form of this scam is that the “family member” will ask the individual to push a certain button or series of buttons to decline future calls, which in turn allows the caller to “spoof” your phone number, or use it at a later time to hide their own phone number, this in turn makes it very difficult to be able to identify the number called from.

Sheriff Wood cautions the public and is asking citizens to please NEVER give out private information such as a social security number, bank information, credit/debit card information, or even information relating to friends or family, and NEVER SEND MONEY.

Sheriff Wood states that there are a few clues to watch out for to help citizens:
1. Never accept calls from an unknown phone number.
2. Never send money when there is a promise of a larger amount.
3. If you think you are being scammed, HANG UP! (Staying on the line, after certain button combinations are pushed, can give the scammer access to more private information.)
4. If you are unsure of the number, research the number on the internet and see if it has been used in previous scams.
5. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There is no such thing as free money.

As always, Sheriff Wood urges citizens to call his office at 740-992-3371 or visit the website at www.meigssheriff.org to ask any questions or leave a tip on further scams.

CLICK HERE TO REPORT A SCAM

Article courtesy of the Meigs Independent Press. 

Sheriff Purchases New Vehicles

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Meigs County Sheriff Keith Wood would like to announce that his office has received five new sheriff’s patrol vehicles recently. Sheriff Wood states that the patrol vehicles his office had been using are older vehicles with an average of 162,000 miles on them. These older vehicles were costly to maintain with several break downs and repairs being done to keep these vehicles on the road for the county.

Sheriff Wood approached the Meigs County Commissioners about leasing new cruisers through the state bid and Commissioners Mike Bartrum, Tim Ihle, and Randy Smith agreed to enter into the lease program to obtain new vehicles for the sheriff’s office and along with Sheriff Wood, using forfeited drug money, was able to purchase five new police package cruisers, one being a 2014 Dodge Charger and the other four being 2015 Ford Interceptor Utility vehicles that are all wheel drive.

The last new vehicles that were purchased by the County Commissioners for the sheriff’s office was back in 1998 when five new Ford Crown Victoria’s were purchased for the sheriff’s office after several cruisers were red tagged and parked for being unsafe.

Sheriff Wood would like to thank the Meigs County Commissioners for their assistance and cooperation with providing his office better vehicles to serve the citizens of Meigs County.

Murder Investigation

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Meigs County Sheriff Keith O. Wood reports a body discovered Saturday on the banks of the Ohio River has been identified as 16 year old Erika Brown who was reported missing on August 10 from Kanahwa County West Virginia.

Sheriff Wood states that Ernest M. Roach (36 Years of Age) of Racine was taken into custody on federal charges out of Kanahwa County in connection with the disappearance of Erika Brown after being stopped by an Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper.

While Roach was in the custody, the remains of Brown were discovered by a group of individuals camping on the Ohio River. Meigs County Prosecutor Collen Williams states Roach will be charged with Murder on August 2, 2014. Roach is currently in the custody of The United States Marshal Service in South Central Regional Jail in West Virginia.

Sheriff Wood states that the investigation has been a joint effort between The Meigs County Sheriff's Office, Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification, Kanahwa County WV. Sheriff's Office, Jackson County WV. Sheriff's Office, and The United Stated Marshal Service.

The investigation is currently ongoing and further details will be released as they become available.