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Would-Be Scam Victim Assumes Imposter Is Grandchild But Refuses To Pay Fake Bail

Updated: Oct 3, 2022

MARYLAND – Herbert Fogeyman was tired of his grandson Devlin’s antics. The teenager was always getting into some kind of mischief. Mr. Fogeyman had helped him out of one too many situations. After Devlin’s last run in with the law, the retired police officer vowed not to help him out of his next offense.

“I love him, but he will just have to learn the hard way,” Herbert said to his wife Berta. Berta agreed.

All of this was completely unknown to renown Grandparent Scammer Wilson Powell (aka HelpmeGma981). They were just the next call for the schemer. He would pose as a grandchild, wheedling out what he could from his older victims. As they would talk, he would present them with a situation. Mostly he stuck to stories involving the grandkid being arrested. Needing bail, or money for legal counsel, he would convince the elderly to wire money from their accounts.

Powell had just got off a call where his success had got him $5,000 from an upset grandmother who thought her grandson was being framed for grand theft auto. It had not been a pleasant experience for either person; the woman must have been disconnected from her actual grandchild. There had been crying and frustration, but in the end, he had gotten away with it. Hoping for a similar success, he dialed the next number.

“Hello, this is Herbert.” Powell put his scheme into motion.

“Grandpa!” he cried. “I’m in jail and I need bail money.”

“What?! Devlin, what did I tell you?” Powell was taken back by this.

“Grandpa, did you hear me? I’m in jail. I got framed for --,” the old man cut him off.

“I told you not to call next time you were in jail! Time for some tough love, buddy boy. When you get out, we can talk.” With that, Herbert Fogeyman disconnected the phone call.

Slightly stunned, Wilson Powell thought for a moment. Most of the push back against him were knowledgeable people who knew he wasn’t related to them. This was an old guy who thought he was giving some tough love to a wayward young man. Powell decided to take a different tactic and called back.

“Hello, this is Herbert.”

“Hello sir,” Powell said in a deeper voice. “This is Max with the police. We’ve got your grandson Devlin here. The situation is very serious.”

“Keep ‘em,” replied Herbert.

“Umm…He will go to prison for the next ten years.”


“Well…it is possible that your grandchild was framed though.” Powell tried to play the innocence card, but to no avail.

“Nope, he is guilty. Look officer, I’ve done what I can. But I believe in our criminal justice system. You take him, send him to prison. Maybe something good will come of it.”

“WE WILL PUT HIM IN SOLITARY CONFINEMENT PERMANENTLY!” Powell tried a threatening scare tactic.

“That’s the spirit, officer. You have a good day.” The line went dead; HelpmeGma981 had failed. It was one less person victimized, though only because of the actual grandchild’s history.

“Herb, who was that?” asked Berta to her husband, who had gone back to sipping his coffee from an old FOP mug.

“Don’t worry about it hon.”

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