The Bakersfield Police Department has received several reports regarding community members receiving text messages from non-local area codes. The text messages provide the address and name of the victim, and accuse the recipient of being involved in the solicitation of prostitution. The scammer then sends a photograph of graphic violent content and threatens the receiver that unless the scammer is paid, that the victim and their family will be killed.
The information that is provided by the scammer is often easily obtained via public records and internet searches. Based upon the number of reports, and different phone numbers associated with the same specific threats, this is a scam. A reverse image search of the graphic photograph reveals it has been present on the internet since 2016 and originates from outside of the United States.
The public is urged to never provide any bank account information, personal identifying information, or conduct wire transfers if you are approached in a similar fashion.
Anyone who has been the victim of this scam can make an online report at the
Bakersfield Police Department portal located at www.bakersfieldcity.us.
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