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Osceola County Sheriff Russ Gibson Warns About COVID-19 Scammers


KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Osceola County Sheriff Russ Gibson issued a warning Friday about scammers posing as American Red Cross workers going door-to-door in Poinciana offering coronavirus tests for nominal fees.

Call 911 if you see scammers
Ignore online cures, drugs
Sheriff: Obey 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew
“We want to make you aware that this is absolutely a scam,” Gibson said during a news conference with other Osceola County officials.

He urged residents to call 911 if they are contacted by the scammers. The county got a tip about them Thursday.

“Sadly, there is a lot of bad people out there and we don’t want you to give them any of yours I hard-earned cash or money that you receive on your income from Social Security or retirement benefits,” Gibson said.

He also urged residents to be cautious about online scams. Don’t click on unfamiliar links. Scammers are also trying to trick people online by posing as representatives of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Ignore online offers for vaccinations,” Gibson added. “You should know that, truly, there are no vaccines, no prescriptions available to treat this or cure this virus.”

He said residents should do their homework before making donations. Ignore demands for cash, gift cards, or wire transfers.

“It is a fraud, and please don’t do it,” Gibson said. He also urged residents to obey an 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew. That’s same as Orange’s curfew. Both counties imposed curfews Friday night.

“This is not only for your protection but for the protection for all residents and visitors to Osceola County,” Gibson said. “Please let me caution you, if at all possible, shelter in your homes. Don’t go out unless you need to, absolutely need to. By staying home, you don’t run the risk of spreading this virus nor will you run the risk of catching this virus.”

Curfew violators could be arrested or receive a citation, Osceola County said in a statement Friday.

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