Sheriff warns of credit card scam

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

McCOOK, Neb. -- The Red Willow County Sheriff's Office warns business owners of a credit card scam that has emerged in McCook and the area since the middle of January.

Sgt. Steve Kotschwar said this morning that the sheriff's office became aware of the situation in late February, after a couple made a large purchase at a McCook business in January and paid with a pre-paid credit card. Kotschwar said the card would not work by swiping it, and the clerk had to type in the card numbers. The purchase was approved, only to be charged back to the merchant later.

Sgt. Kotschwar said the same thing has happened to other merchants in McCook and the area, and merchants are reporting losses amounting to several thousand dollars.

A tip-off, he said, might be that the card presented won't work by swiping it, and the numbers must be typed in by the clerk. If this happens, Sgt. Kotschwar strongly recommends that the clerk ask for identification from the couple.

The couple in question has used various brands of credit cards.

Merchants who suspect they have been victims, regardless of the amount of loss, are asked to contact the sheriff's office at (308) 345-1850, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m until 4 p.m.

The sheriff's department is working with the McCook Police Department and the Nebraska State Patrol in the investigation.

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