Police & Fire

Press Releases

South Plainfield Police Warn Residents of Virtual Kidnappings


SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The South Plainfield Police Department is alerting residents about a rising telephone scam called “virtual kidnappings.” 

It starts with a frantic phone call from an unfamiliar voice, claiming they kidnapped a family member or spouse.  The kidnappers then demand a ransom in exchange for your loved one’s release and tell you to wire the money for the ransom payment.  The kidnappers use social media to learn more about their victims and claim they’re holding their cell phone, saying if you try to contact your loved one, you’re jeopardizing their life.

Law enforcement officials believe the masterminds behind the scam are Hispanic males who speak to victims with a Spanish accent.  Also that the money is wired to a third party in Puerto Rico, where the incoming calls’ area codes are usually from.

Sign Up for E-News

To tell whether a kidnapping scam is fake, when scammers call the victims, they often direct them to transfer money using a wire transfer service like a Western Union.  Usual ransom requests are between  $500 - $2000.  Asking then for a wire transfer is often a red flag as scammers prefer wire transfers because they are hard to trace.  In addition, scammers do not call from the kidnapping victim’s phone and they often want victims to stay on the line until the wire transfer is complete.

When scammers call the victim, they most likely have no knowledge of their loved ones specifically.  If you hear a voice on the other end of the line, try to determine if it is actually familiar.  Rather than rush to send the requested money, try to find the victim’s whereabouts first and request to speak to the victim.  DO NOT share any information about you or your family member. 

If you happen to get one of these calls, slow down the conversation and ask for more time, call or text the victim from another phone if possible, and contact the police.

For anyone who has any similar incidents or has any questions, please contact the South Plainfield Police Department at (908) 755-0700 or email Detective Sergeant Garrett Cassio at gcassio@sppolice.com.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


East Brunswick: I Don't Wanna Close Up, I'm a Toys-R-Us Kid

March 16, 2018

EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - East Brunswick used to be the home of Meyer's toy store, an almost idyllic wonderland of all sorts of Barbies, parts for swimming pools, and clanging model trains until it closed in 2002.  Kay-Bee toy store was a popular stop at the Brunswick Square Mall until 2009, with a salesperson often displaying the newest gadget outside its door, causing eager kids ...


Piscataway – Reinhard Rudolf Kiefer, 85, died Sunday March 11, 2018 at home. Born in ...
Read more
Piscataway, NJ – Manuela Cruz, 94, born July 17, 1923, passed away peacefully on March 8, ...
Read more

Celebrate National Ag Day at the Middlesex County EARTH Center

March 13, 2018

EARTH CENTER, NORTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - Consider this: just about everything we eat, wear and use comes from agriculture. That is why America’s farmers and their crops are celebrated each year on National Ag Day, which falls this year on March 20.

To honor this day, the Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Middlesex County has planned a new seminar entitled The State of Agriculture and ...

Darby Road to Host Fifth Annual St. Patrick's Day Festival

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Darby Road Public House (450 Park Ave., Scotch Plains) has announced the dates and times of its hugely popular St. Patrick’s Day Festival, which will be set up in the municipal parking lot.

The festival features Irish bands, Irish step dancers, bagpipers, great Irish fare and enough Guinness to go around! The event also will have a bounce house, ...

Piscataway Libraries Host Annual NJ Makers Day Program

PISCATAWAY, NJ – The Piscataway Public Libraries were once again hosts to dozens of “makers” for the 4th Annual NJ Makers Day celebration.

The Saturday events at the Kennedy and Westergard Libraries featured activities and demonstrations by members of the maker culture with a focus on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) initiatives.

Among other ...

NCAA Tournament: Heilmann and DelVecchio Both Secure All-American Honors; Suriano Becomes Rutgers' First-Ever Finalist

CLEVELAND, OH -The senior class of South Plainfield High School’s “Murderer’s Row”, the 2013 team that earned a group title, two individual state titles, and produced five state placewinners, knows a thing or two about making wrestling history. The 2018 NCAA wrestling tournament marks the last time two standouts from 2013 team, Troy Heilmann and Scott DelVecchio, will ...

Pre-Ticket Sale for Holy Savior Academy’s 4th Annual Spring Splendor Tricky Tray

Holy Savior Academy is hosting its Spring Splendor Tricky Tray Saturday, April 21, 2018 at the school.  Doors open at 6:00 p.m.

Tickets are limited and will be sold at Holy Savior Academy, 149 South Plainfield Avenue, South Plainfield on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. (cash or checks)

BYOB and food- Admission $ 25 per ...

Upcoming Events

Thu, March 22, 7:00 PM


The Basics of Starting a Business

Business & Finance

Fri, March 23, 8:00 PM

State Theatre New Jersey , New Brunswick

Motown the Musical

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, March 24, 8:00 PM

State Theatre New Jersey , New Brunswick

Motown the Musical

Arts & Entertainment

Sun, March 25, 8:00 AM

St. Francis Episcopal Church, Dunellen

Palm Sunday

Religions And Spirituality

New Jersey Hoops Player Isaiah Rogers Part of College Basketball History

March 17, 2018

CHARLOTTE, NC - You all saw what happened. You all witnessed history.

But did you know a former Jonathan Dayton basketball player, who helped lead the Bulldogs to an NJSIAA North Jersey, Section 2, Group 1 state title in 2012-13, is on the University of Maryland-Baltimore County men’s basketball roster?

Junior guard Isaiah Rogers, who served as UMBC’s team’s manager in ...

Get Smart

I don’t want to be on a first name basis with my refrigerator.


Oh don’t get me wrong, I am all for cool technology—when it works—but I draw the line at talking to appliances.  I have enough trouble carrying on conversations with humans.  


But in what must be one of the truly great technological oxymorons of our time, the dawn of the ...