In the State

Tuesday September 4, 2012


‘Grandparent scams’
prompt AG’s warning

Massachusetts Attorney Gen eral Martha Coakley is warning elderly residents about phone calls from scammers who pose as relatives who desperately need money.

In these "grandparent scams," an impostor typically calls an elderly person, claims to be a grandchild or relative and asks the victim to send money through a wire transfer service overseas.

According to Coakley’s office, in some schemes the impostor will offer details about a legitimate relative, which can be easily found online. In others, the caller tricks the victim into revealing information the impostor can use. And the impostor will often say they’ve gotten in a bind while vacationing overseas.

Coakley said people shouldn’t be afraid to ask questions or say no.


Worcester man faces
child porn charges

A Massachusetts man charged in an international child porn investigation is due in court this week.

Geoffrey Portway of Worcester was charged in July after state and federal agents allegedly found child pornography and photos of children who appeared to be dead on his computer.

Authorities say Portway chatted online with two men who talked about their desire to abduct, kill and eat children.

Portway is among 46 people arrested in a child porn investigation that began with the arrest of another Massachusetts man, Robert Diduca. So far, authorities have identified more than 140 child victims in seven countries.

At federal court hearing in August, Portway agreed to be held without bail on possession and distribution charges. He’s due back in court Wednesday for a probable cause hearing.


39 stolen cows found
at auction site in Pa.

Police say most of the 49 cows stolen from a Dartmouth farm have turned up at a cattle auction site in Pennsylvania.

Dartmouth police Sgt. Allen Shaw said Monday that 39 of the animals have been found in New Holland, Pa.

Police are still investigating, and Shaw had no additional details about the alleged theft or location of the other cows.

Police say the bandits struck the communal farm on Old Fall River Road late Saturday. The cows are worth an estimated $50,000.

The farm on Old Fall River Road is reached by a winding dirt road and has been owned by Mary Robinson since 2001, although the cows don’t belong to her. One man tells the Standard-Times that the owner rents out portions of the farm to tenants..


Toddler survives fall
from 2nd-floor window

A toddler is being treated at a hospital after surviving a fall from a second-floor window in Worcester.

Worcester Deputy Fire Chief Geoffrey Gardell told WBZ NewsRadio that the 2-year-old boy appears to have pushed through a window screen, falling 12 to 14 feet to the ground.

Gardell said the boy was alert and conscious when crews arrived at the house on Hancock Street on Monday morning. He said the boy had a visible bump on his forehead and was crying.

-- The Associated Press


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