Threatening phone calls spark BC RCMP warning

Image: RCMP

BC RCMP are warning of a series of threatening phone calls to women across the Lower Mainland that are believed to be linked.

The troubling calls started in 2017. At times, the male caller accurately identifies the woman by name and address, and claims he has been watching her through cameras he allegedly installed inside her home. He then demands the woman engage in sexually explicit conversation with him or the victim or a family member would be killed. He is often described as speaking in a quiet voice.

There is no evidence at this time that the caller has actually installed the cameras. Most calls are received on the victim’s home phone number; however, some female employees of lingerie and swimwear stores have received calls at their workplace.

Police believe the caller is using a telephone number spoofing app, software or website which changes the caller identification number. He appears to be gathering information about the victim through open social media sources.

“If you believe that you may have been the recipient of one of these calls and have not already reported to police, we encourage you to do so now,” said Sgt. Janelle Shoihet, Media Relations Officer for the BC RCMP, on Wednesday.

The BC RCMP recommend the following safety tips should you receive such a call:

* Record the caller’s telephone number
* Hang up, do not engage in conversation with the caller
* Immediately report the incident to your local police
* When and wherever possible, block the number
* Use an unlisted name and number