Stories about breaking the law!

The Attack Of The “Wait” Finger

, , , , , , | Legal | February 17, 2021

My house is on a corner with the side street on a slight hill. In the winter, the hill gets icy and even four-wheel-drive vehicles have difficulty getting started after stopping for the stop sign. Because of this, I have installed a heavy timber retaining wall to stop vehicles from running through my fence and into my yard; I have to replace parts of that wall frequently, however.

But now it’s summer and weather conditions are fine. It’s about noon and I hear a familiar crash. I look out to see a large black SUV straddling the timber wall, a middle-aged lady at the wheel, still talking on her phone, her tires still going forward but a couple of feet off the ground. A mix of radiator fluid, engine oil, transmission fluid, and power steering fluid is squirting all over.

I go up to her.

Me: “Turn off your engine before you ruin it, ma’am.”

I get the “wait” finger while she continues on the phone. I finally SHOUT:

Me: “TURN OFF YOUR ENGINE!”

She does so while continuing her phone call. (Gee, I wonder how she missed the turn and ended up on my wall!) She finally gets out of her car, still on the phone.

Me: “Do you want to call the cops, or do you want me to?”

She turns her back to me; I am obviously interrupting her very important phone call. I call the police. The police arrive about ten minutes later and the lady is still on the phone. They ask me if I was involved and I explain that I am the homeowner and the lady was driving.

Cop: “Ma’am, can I please have your license, registration, and insurance information?”

The lady gives the cop the “wait” finger and turns her back to him. After several minutes:

Cop: “I need your license, registration, and insurance papers. Please put your phone down.”

She scowls at him and sets her purse down on the retaining wall in front of her spewing vehicle. While still on her phone, she digs with one hand through her purse and gives him her license. He has to ask her again for the other papers, which she finally gives him. He goes back to his cop car to do whatever they do, make reports, etc.

I am still on the scene, so I walk closer to the lady and overhear part of what she is saying.

Lady: “Yeah, I just got my car out of the shop this morning, and I’m already in another wreck.” *Pauses* “Yeah, some guy put this wall out in the street so that it hit me.”

I intervene and speak to her, interrupting her important phone call.

Me: “I put that wall on my property to keep cars out of my fence.”

I point to the newest section of fence where a car took out some of the wall and went through my fence into my yard last winter.

Lady: *Screaming at me* “I would not have gone through your fence! Idiot!

The cop came and gave her a ticket… and she still had not put down her phone. A wrecker came — oh, boy, that’s ANOTHER story for another time — and ignoring my pleas to lift the car off the wall, just chained up and dragged it from the wall, causing more damage to both the car and my wall.

Still on the phone, the lady got into the wrecker and left.

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A Scammer With A Sense Of Morality

, , , | Legal | February 15, 2021

I do virtual support work as a volunteer for the American branch of an internationally famous emergency response charity. Most of the phone calls I get on my cell phone are related to this work, to the point where I automatically answer my personal phone with the greeting for the charity.

The phone rings one Saturday morning.

Me: “American [Charity], this is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

I hear a startled male voice with a heavy accent.

Caller: “What? Who is this?”

I start to sense a scammer.

Me: “This is the American [Charity].”

Caller: “This is Saturday! You are working today? This is a business line?”

I make my voice warm, comforting, and absolutely oozing sincerity.

Me: “Sir, the [Charity] is on duty all day, every day, 365 days of the year. Now, how may I help you?”

Caller: “I am so sorry! I am so sorry! Never mind!”

I should start doing this to scammers on my personal landline, as well, but I think the national headquarters would object.

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Let’s Hope This One Doesn’t Rise From The Ashes

, , , | Legal | February 12, 2021

Like many of you, I enjoy messing with scammers. This interaction is my favorite so far. Unfortunately, I cannot duplicate the over-the-top fake New Jersey accent used in this call.

Scammer: “Hello, this is [Scammer] with American Medicare. How are you today?”

Me: “And where are you located?”

Scammer: “I am in Phoenix, Arizona.”

Me: “What time is it in Phoenix, Arizona?”

There’s silence for thirty seconds.

Scammer: “I am calling about your American Medicare benefits!”

Me: “Great. What time is it in Phoenix, Arizona?”

Scammer: “What did you say?”

Me: “What time is it in Phoenix, Arizona?”

Scammer: “Um…”

There’s silence again for a minute.

Me: “I can do this all day. Whatever keeps you from cheating the gullible.”

Scammer: “I’ll put you on our do-not-call list.”

Me: “Aw, don’t want to play anymore?”

And they hung up on me.

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That Should’ve Been Their First Question

, , , , | Legal | February 9, 2021

I am relaxing a bit on my lunch break and scrolling through my phone when I get a phone call. Upon answering it, I realize it’s a scam call. Feeling a little bored, I decide to have some fun.

Scammer: “Hello, this is [Scammer] from [Online Retailer] customer service. There has been some fraudulent activity on your account.”

Me: “What did you say your name was?”

Scammer: *A bit confused* “Um, it’s [Scammer].”

Me: “Okay, great. How do you spell that?”

Still confused, the scammer spells his name.

Me: “All right, then, [Scammer]. So, what’s wrong with my [Online Retailer] account, again?”

Scammer: “There appears to have been some fraudulent activity on your account in China. Do you know anyone in China who might be able to explain this?”

Me: “No, I don’t, but you know what’s funny? I don’t have an [Online Retailer] account.”

Click.

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Being A Jerk Does Not Endear You

, , | Legal | February 6, 2021

I get a call on my mobile phone from a number I don’t recognise. I suspect it’s a scam but answer it anyway, just in case.

Scammer: “Hi, can I speak to [My Name]?”

Me: “Who’s calling?”

Scammer: “Hi, [My Name]. How are you today?”

Me: “Can you tell me who’s speaking?”

Scammer: “You’re rude. I’m not telling you anything.”

I hung up. I’m really not sure what he hoped to achieve by this.

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