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Iowa mom explains terrifying child abduction phone scam

WAUKEE (WOI) - There's a new scam in Iowa. The scammer calls and fakes a child's kidnap.

Some parents get scared enough and believe it's real. They then send the scammers thousands of dollars to get their kids back.

Dee McDonald says she got one of these calls and it was so believable she said she would have stopped at nothing to get her daughter Sami back. 

She is thankful it didn't come to that, but warns other people what to look out for in case you get a call like the terrifying one she got.

"If you do anything but talk to me I am going to kill your daughter, hurt your daughter and you are never going to see her again," said Dee McDonald.

The mom from Adel says a few weeks ago she got a call from a number she didn't recognize. Thinking it could be one of her kids calling from someone else's phone she answered.

"She was screaming mom come help me, you've gotta com help me."

At first, Dee thought her daughters had gotten in a car accident. But then a man came onto the phone and said he had abducted Sami, Dee's youngest daughter. And he wasn't going to give her back until Dee paid him.

"This guy kept yelling in a very angry tone to get the money and to get to Walgreens as fast as I could."

The man told Dee she couldn't talk to anyone and he was tracking her every move. Thinking quickly on her feet, Dee motioned for her husband to get in the car before she headed off down Hickman.

"My husband, hearing that, I slowed down and he got out at a Kum and Go and he called 911."

Then Dee stopped at Casey's to take out as much money from the ATM as she could, which was $300. Before she went to Walgreens to wire the money through Western Union. Moments before she was about to sent the money, the police showed up.

"I am telling the police officers to be quiet because I don't want him to think anything was going on that he may leave with her. So I am telling them to be quiet and they say no, it's a hoax."

Dee says it took her a minute to believe the police that it was all just a scam. She was ready to do whatever she could to get her daughter back safe and sound. In hind sight, she says she maybe should have questioned the con more.

"Instead of saying to you mean the Walgreens on 156th Street, I wish I would have said which Walgreens?"

Dee had never heard about this abduction scam. She say's people need to know this is happening around town and what to do or say if you get a call yourself.

Waukee police say if you get a call asked detailed questions to see if the scammer knows anything about you or your family. Scammers are collecting some information on social media so be careful what you post.

-- Brynn Carman


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