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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Somerset Co. couple threatened over the phone by scammers

SOMERSET COUNTY, Pa. -- People throughout the region are continuing to be targeted by a scam that 6 News reported on earlier this week. People are getting disturbing phone calls and the person on the other end is going as far as to threaten violence.

Most people have received at least one call, text or letter informing them they won a sweepstakes. Nine times out of 10, it's not true. Usually it's best to ignore the message or tell the caller to take your name off the list, but what happens when start threatening your home or your family? That's what one local couple told 6 News they're dealing with.

The woman and her husband wanted to remain anonymous, but after seeing the story on 6 News about a phone scam in Somerset County earlier this week, they wanted to share their own story. They said someone keeps calling from Mega Millions Sweepstakes to tell them they won a ton of cash.

"In order to claim our prize we had to go to Walmart, get a Greed Card for $200 dollars," said the woman. "Every time they call it's different."

The first call they received was about six months ago and they said the calls haven't stopped since.

"It's two, three times a day, maybe more," she said. "Hanging up on them doesn't make them quit. Telling them do not call you back doesn't make them quit."

And that's not all.The couple said they've even been threatened.

"The man told us our address and said, 'We're going to blow up or burn up your house,' and with that he hung up," she said.

6 News wanted to ask it's own questions and then, like clockwork, the phone rang.

"I work with the local television station and we're investigating what's going on with these phone calls," said 6 News reporter Maria Miller. "Can you tell me what you're doing?"

"This is not a scam," said the man on the other end. "I don't know why when I call people they are accusing of us of scamming them."

When Miller asked why he keeps calling even though the couple has asked the calls to stop, he said it was the first time he was calling.

"This is the first time I'm calling," he said. "I don't know what you're talking about."

The caller kept talking, said he was working with the phone company and trying to get the couple their prize. He only hung up when Miller said she was calling the police.

"When you're bugged so many times like this, they want you to break," said the woman who has been receiving the calls. "I would hate, after all these years, to have to change our phone number."

Fortunately the couple said they knew better from the start and never sent a dime. But Somerset County District Attorney Lisa Lazzari-Strasiser said she knows of at least one person in the county who has. She said that woman has already lost close to $2,000. Her office is investigating, but in the meantime anyone who gets a call like this should call police immediately.

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Edgar Snyder

Washington Times

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