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Scam callers asking for donations to support police program

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BATON ROUGE - Louisiana State Police say there are a number of scam callers targeting Louisiana residents. The callers are asking for donations to support law enforcement.

LSP says it will never call you to ask for money.

"We're never going to cold-call people and ask for money, personal information, anything along those lines. So if you get a call like that, I can guarantee you it's not coming from state police," said Sgt. Jared Sandifer.

One particular call sounds like it's a well-recorded prompt that responds to questions asked and answers given by a person who answers the phone.

"This is Paul Jackson from Pledge Assistance," said one caller.

As the call continues, the caller says he's representing US Troopers and Police Program, "a political action committee that lobbies to help officers across the country."

There's a website for US Troopers and Police Program, but information about the program's details are vague. A number provided in the contact section of the website leads you to a recording that asks you to leave a message.

Often, the caller ID can be manipulated to be from a local number. People are more inclined to answer that way.

"If we were to send you out a support envelope, could your officers count on you to turn a one-time donation for the drive?" said the caller.

Specific information about the "drive" is never given. State police say they've heard of a couple of scams just like this one. Again, state police say it will never ask for money.

"You know, trust your gut is the first thing I can tell people if it doesn't sound right, if it doesn't seem right, it probably isn't," said Sandifer.

State police say you can submit calls like this one through an app, "See Something Send Something." It's a nationwide suspicious activity reporting tool.

State police sent out a press release Friday evening, stressing that citizens should never give unsolicited callers any personal information. Anyone who receives suspected fraudulent calls is asked to contact the Louisiana State Analytical and Fusion Center (LA-SAFE) at 225-925-4192.

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