Duke Energy phone scam nearly claims two more victims

SALISBURY, NC (WBTV) - Two victims fell prey to the ongoing Duke Energy scam, but one was able to call off the transaction before the any money was lost.

The scam has been making the rounds in Salisbury for the last few weeks.

On Tuesday someone called T Tobacco on Freeland Drive and told the owner that the company was $3200 in arrears on its power bill, and that if he didn't pay the bill, the power would be shut off.

The owner told the caller that he would go to the local Duke Energy office to pay the bill, but the caller told the owner that the office was closed and that the owner would need to load up prepaid credit cards and call back with the code.

The owner did as he was asked and is now out $3200.

Later the caller called back, again saying that the company owed more money. This time the owner didn't believe it, and called police.

Around the same time a call was made to the owner of The Forum on S. Main Street.

He was told that he was $2000 behind on his bill, and that the power would be shut off unless it was paid.

The owner also said that he would visit the local office, but the caller told him that the office was now closed and that he would have to load up the credit cards through a company called ReLoadIt, then provide the code numbers.

The owner did as he was asked, but then a short time later, decided it might be a scam and canceled the transaction.

"If they're asking for prepaid cards you should know something is wrong," Captain Melonie Thompson of the Salisbury Police Department told WBTV.

Thompson said the calls were coming from the number 855-505-3231. She added that Duke Energy would never ask anyone to pay a bill by these methods.