A 90-year-old pensioner in western Germany mistook a policewoman for a fraudster and shot at her with a rifle, leaving her with blast trauma.
“We were lucky, it could have turned out much worse,’’ a police spokesman said on Monday.
The pensioner, from the village of Glashuetten in the state of Hesse, had on Sunday been tricked by scammers who had pretended they were police officers.
They told him the cash he had in his house was at risk and he should leave it by the front door for the police to collect and protect it for him.
The fraudsters got away with thousands of Euros.
They faked a call to him from an emergency phone number, which when he called back put him through to the real police.
When a patrol car turned up, he assumed it was also from the scammers and shot at the policewoman.
The pensioner has a weapons permit.
The police spokesman said there had been a spate of fake police officer scams in the region.
They target older people in well-to-do areas and pretend to be police officers or public prosecutors, telling the pensioners their savings are at risk and that they should hand cash over to “the police” for protection.
They are also able to disguise their real telephone numbers, displaying the emergency number 110 or the local police station’s number. (dpa/NAN)