This week we are once again seeing fraudulent internet
schemes and phishing attempts occurring across the Community. Please remember
that Social Media is just as vulnerable to scam artists, as are direct emails and
text messages. Social media accounts
such as Facebook’s Messenger can appear to be legitimate and may even look like
the contact being made is a referral from a trusted friend, relative or
business associate. If ever in doubt, do not jump into something that seems too
good to be true.
If someone is offering you a business opportunity or
an investment option or even just asking for a favor such as a short-term loan,
VERIFY before you send any money. Call your friend, relative, business partner
or whomever, and see if they truly did make the referral? Never provide any
personal information until you are 100% sure that you are dealing with a
legitimate business and/or person. Anyone trying to pressure you into making a
commitment, sending money, providing a credit card or debit card number is
trying to steal your money. Please, we do not want anyone to become a victim of
these types of crimes.
The same holds true for organizations requesting
donations and/or sponsorships. Because of the internet, and the ability to
create “official” sounding names, logo’s or IP domains, there is an increase in
these types of scams as well. Look
closely at the organization, foundation or group that you are making a donation
too. Again, do your research on-line, are there more than one group with the
same name? As an example, maybe the XYZ, XYZ Foundation, XYZ Association and/or
the XYZ Affiliates. One maybe a .com and another a .org and a third a .net Many
legitimate organizations are being cheated out of valuable donations by these
other groups that often have no legitimate purpose or charitable operation.
Also, this week the FBI issued a warning about
clicking on sale ad’s that appear on social media sites as some of these click
troughs take you to other fraudulent or substandard businesses where you can
become a potential victim of ID theft, fraud or may end up purchasing a poor
quality item or service. Read more at
the below news link out of Charlotte.
This weekend is the 2020 Sales Tax Holiday/Tax Free
Weekend. School starts for many students (at least virtually) August 24th. So now is the time to take advantage of
not paying sales tax on school supplies. This year due to the COVID-19 pandemic
the below rules as per the Texas Comptroller apply:
To promote social distancing, the Texas Comptroller’s
office wants all taxpayers to know that during the Tax-Free Weekend, you can
buy qualifying items online or by telephone, mail, custom order or any other
means (including in-store purchases) tax free, when either
- the item is both
delivered, and paid for, by the customer during the exemption; or
- the customer orders and
pays for the item, and the seller accepts the order during the exemption
period for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the
exemption period ends.
- A seller accepts an order when
the seller has acted to fill the order for immediate shipment.
- An order is filled for
immediate shipment regardless of whether the shipment is delayed due to a
backlog of orders or because stock is currently unavailable, or on back
order by, the seller.
I have heard from residents this week about a few
close calls between vehicles and children on bicycles. In most of the cases
parents were close by however, the child was far enough away where they are
hard to see, or out in moving traffic. It is important that everyone does their
part; motorists, cyclists and parents. Our goal is to prevent any tragedies
this summer. Vehicles need to be alert for walkers and children, cyclists need
to obey traffic laws and kids on bikes need to be closely watched and kept
nearby parents who are easier to see and can help keep kids away from traffic
lanes. Lets all keep our speeds down as
citations will be issued as needed.
On Saturday at 10am, the Harris County Constables
Office Precinct 5, will be having Funeral services for Constable Mark Brown at
Chapelwood. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic the services will be limited in
attendance. However, there will be a 21-gun salute at the conclusion of
services. Nearby residents can expect to hear the gunshot volley at
approximately 11 am. Deputy Brown had previously worked for the Spring Branch
ISD Police Department for 18 years.
Please, don’t forget that COVID-19 protocols are
still in place. Wear face coverings throughout Harris County, keep washing
hands and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces.
Have a great weekend. Chief Ray Schultz email@example.com
Weekly Crime Report
7/31/20 at 2230 Hours. 11600 Block of Starwood.
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia/Traffic Violations. Officers while on patrol
observed a vehicle traveling at excessive speeds north on Blalock Road. As
officers made a U-turn to stop the vehicle, it was observed to run a stop sign.
Officers were able to catch up and stop the vehicle on Starwood. Upon
approaching the driver officers could smell the odor of marijuana emitting from
the vehicle. Through investigation officers located miscellaneous drug
paraphernalia inside the vehicle. Both the driver and passenger were issued
citations and released. The paraphernalia was tagged into evidence.
8/5/20 at 1015 Hours. Radney Road. Fraud. The victim reported that she had received a
message through Facebook Messenger that she believed was a referral from an
acquaintance. The information from the Facebook Messenger Account appeared to
be from “The Facebook Financial Assistance Grant Program”. The victim
unwittingly believed the program to be true and sent funds via Fed Ex to an
address in Washington State. After receiving a subsequent request for
additional funds due to “issues” encountered with the transaction, the victim
realized that she had been defrauded. It was also learned that her friends
Facebook account had been hacked and his address book compromised. Information about the transaction, emails and
accounts was obtained and provided to detectives for their follow up
8/3/20 at 1230 Hours. 400 Voss. Unauthorized Use of a
Stolen Motor Vehicle/Felony Warrants/Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted
Felon. Officers were alerted to a stolen vehicle traveling on Voss Road from
Magnolia Bend. Officers located the
vehicle traveling Eastbound on Memorial. Officers initiated a traffic stop on
the stolen vehicle and took the 2 occupants into custody. Through investigation
it was learned that the driver also had outstanding Felony Warrants for prior
Unlawful Use of Stolen Vehicles and was a convicted Felon. The driver was also
found to be in possession of a Glock pistol and a 30-round magazine. The
vehicle was confirmed as stolen and the owner contacted. The 24-year-old male
was booked into the Harris County Jail. The female who claimed to be just
getting a ride from the male, was identified and released. The vehicle was
towed as per the owner’s request. The firearm was tagged into evidence.
8/4/20 at 2215 Hours. 800 Voss Road. Unlawful Use of a
Stolen Motor Vehicle/Unlawful Use of False Documents. Officers were notified of
a stolen vehicle traveling on Voss. Officers were nearby and quickly located
and stopped the stolen 2020 Dodge Challenger. The vehicle was confirmed as a
stolen rental vehicle. Investigation showed that the vehicle had been rented
with a false Driver’s License and Credit Card. Officers located the fake ID
inside the vehicle with the suspects picture on it but with someone else’s
personal information. The 24-year-old male was taken into custody and booked
into the Harris County Jail, and the vehicle recovered and towed.
8/7/20 at 0915 Hours. Voss at Memorial. Unlawful
Use of a Stolen Motor Vehicle/Fugitive. Officers were alerted of a stolen
vehicle entering the Villages on Voss from I-10. Officers located the vehicle
traveling South on Voss near Memorial. As the vehicle turned west on Voss
officers initiated a traffic stop and took 2 people into custody. The vehicle
was confirmed as stolen out of Louisiana.A check of the subjects showed that
both occupants had outstanding warrants for their arrests. One of the males was
a wanted fugitive out of Louisiana. The other subject had multiple Houston area
warrants. The DA’s Office was contacted
and did not accept charges on the Unlawful Use of a Vehicle, due to the victim
being from out of state. The agencies that had issued the warrants were all
contacted, and all declined to extradite due to the COVID-19. The vehicle was
recovered and towed. The 2 suspects were
given a ride to Chimney Rock and I-10 and released.