Sheriff news: 3 scams reported in Otter Tail County

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Otter Tail County sheriff deputies reported that three county residents were victims of scam attempts on Friday, Feb. 14.

  • A person who lives southeast of Erhard near Highway 27 had a pop up on her computer screen asking her to make a call, which she did. This allowed a scammer to have access to her computer screen. When the scammer asked for banking information, the rural Erhard resident hung up. As of Feb. 18 the county resident was not out any money.
  • The second scam took place near Dalton. A resident gave out a Social Security number, realized a big mistake had been made, and contacted financial institutions in order to monitor accounts. The Dalton resident believes the scam call came from Texas or another state.
  • The third scam involved a resident who lives on the west side of Otter Tail Lake. The resident received a call from a fictitious medical supply company and gave out the number of a Medicare card for a would-be purchase of a back brace. The resident later called Medicare and a federal representative said they did not authorize any transaction.

Sheriff deputies warn county residents about different types of financial scam attempts, especially during the tax season.
As an example, some county residents are receiving automated phone calls saying they have tax judgments against them, and to call a number to clear up the matter and avoid arrest.

Instead, hang up and call the county sheriff office at 218-998-8555.

Minor injury suffered in crash northwest of Perham

Otter Tail County sheriff deputies reported a minor injury following a traffic accident northwest of Perham at 3:57 p.m. Feb. 13. The accident took place on West Wymer Lake Road, near the Becker County line. Deputies said a driver lost control of his vehicle and the car entered a ditch.

2-year-old injured in car wreck near Bluffton

A 2-year-old passenger was injured Wednesday, Feb. 12, in a traffic accident southwest of Bluffton. The accident took place at 11:19 a.m. at the intersection of Highways 143 and 52 in eastern Otter Tail County.


The driver, 21-year-old Barbara Jean Zirk of Deer Creek, turned her vehicle to avoid hitting a deer on icy roads, according to Otter Tail County sheriff deputies. The vehicle entered a ditch.

Sheriff deputies said the driver and passenger were traveling on Highway 52 when the accident took place.

No injuries in 1-vehicle rollover north of Underwood

A driver was fortunate to escape injuries when her vehicle rolled into a slough north of Underwood and came to rest in approximately 3 feet of water.

The mishap took place at 7:01 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2 miles north of town near Highway 35 and Norway Lake Road.

“Members of the Underwood Fire Department arrived at the scene and were able to assist the driver, 23-year-old Katelynn Anderson of Fergus Falls, from the vehicle,” said County Sheriff Administrative Lt. Keith Van Dyke. “The driver had slowed for a deer, hit a patch of ice, lost control and then rolled the vehicle.”

Burglar steals wedding bands, piggy bank savings

A resident of rural Rothsay reported the theft of jewelry and other items on Feb. 11, following forced entry to the house, on 150th Avenue.

Among the items taken were hand rings, wedding ring bands, a necklace and piggy bank contents. Total loss was an estimated $1,550.

There were no immediate suspects and an investigation was ongoing as of Feb. 12.


ATV ramps stolen

The theft of ATV ramps was reported Feb. 15 from a pickup box at the public access near the town of Ottertail, at Donalds Lake.

Loss of the ramps totals $150. There were no suspects as of Feb. 18.

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