Defunct state information line connects callers to possible phone scam


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico man said he tried calling what he thought was a general information line for the State of New Mexico. Instead, he got a person on the other end asking him for information.

The number 800-825-6639 is listed on more than a dozen directories on the internet.

“I was trying to go through the state information number which provides individual agency numbers,” Frank Martin said. “I think the number I called is actually an older number and the thing is, it’s all over the internet.”

Martin was correct.

Wyndham Kemsley, Public Information Officer for the state’s Department of Information Technology (DoIT), said it was the general information line from 2010-2015.

That’s no longer the case.

“If you call the number, it only rings a couple of times and then you’re talking to someone in India or in the Caribbean and they’re advertising a $100 gift card at Walmart and Target,” Martin said.

Martin, thinking he had misdialed, called the same number a few times. The only problem? He never got through.

“Disabled people and the elderly can’t afford these international scammers fishing for personal data, including bank account numbers, in the State of New Mexico,” he said.

Kemsley said the state disconnected the number in 2015. He said the phone company must have re-assigned it.

KRQE News 13 shared Martin’s concerns with Attorney General Hector Balderas’ office, who tried calling the number. They also found some major red flags.

“As soon as you call, they’re not identifying who they are with,” Cholla Khoury said.

That leads people like Khoury to believe that it could be a scam. Khoury is the AG’s Director of the Consumer and Environmental Protection Division. Now the number is on their radar.

“If you’ve won something, you should never have to pay to get your prize,” Khoury said. “If you send that money, we have a very hard time tracking it down or finding it.”

KRQE News 13 tried once more Wednesday afternoon and got an entirely different recording. It stated, “Are you or someone in your household 50 years of age or older?”

Kemsley sent KRQE News 13 a statement saying:

“With the rapid and continual expansion of the internet, the general information line does not exist anymore. Instead, we urge those with questions to consult the directory which can be found at www.phonebook.state.nm.us, which contains all state agency and division numbers.”

He did not say if state officials ever put out a notice telling people the number was no longer a state managed phone number.

Kemsley also said the number is not advertised on any state specific website.


Filed under: Home, New Mexico, News, SmartTV, Strange, Top Stories, Top Video

Miguel Gonzales Throws 8 Strong Innings, White Sox Beat Astros 7-1

CHICAGO (AP) — Tim Anderson homered and drove in three runs, Miguel Gonzalez tossed eight strong innings and the Chicago White Sox beat the Houston Astros 7-1 on Wednesday night, their second straight win over the team with the best record in the AL. Leury Garcia and Yolmer Sanchez each had two-run singles as Chicago won consecutive games for just the second time since last month’s All-Star break. Gonzalez (6-10) allowed one run on five hits to record the 50th win of his career. He bounced back after getting shelled for seven runs on seven hits in 1 2/3 innings against Boston last Thursday. Derek Fisher homered leading off the eighth for Houston’s only run. George Springer went 1 for 4 in his return from the 10-day disabled list. The Astros have dropped three of four overall and four straight on the road. Chicago rookie Yoan Moncada went 1 for 2 with two walks and has reached safely in 14 of his last 25 plate appearances. Houston starter Colin McHugh (0-1) escaped a bases-loaded, no-out jam in the second inning, but Chicago broke through for four runs in the fifth. Nicky Delmonico led off with a single and Anderson followed with a homer to make it 2-0. The next batter, Omar Narvaez, kept the rally going with a single and one out later Garcia hit a ground-rule double to put runners on second and third. Sanchez then singled to left to score both runners for a 4-0 lead. The White Sox tacked on three runs in the sixth to knock out McHugh. He allowed seven runs on nine hits in 5 1/3 innings. MINORS MOVES To make room for Springer on the roster, the Astros optioned 1B Tyler White to Triple-A Fresno. Manager A.J. Hinch said it was a tough decision. “Tyler White deserved to stay,” Hinch said. “There’s only 25 roster spots.” White, 26, batted .310 with three homers and nine RBIs in nine games with Houston. The White Sox announced a minor trade before the game, acquiring RHP Steve Johnson from Baltimore for cash considerations. Johnson, 29, was assigned to Triple-A Charlotte.   TRAINER’S ROOM Astros: RHP Michael Feliz (right shoulder discomfort) is expected to begin throwing soon. He was placed on the 10-day DL on Aug. 1. . C Evan Gattis is still experiencing symptoms after being placed on the 7-day concussion DL on Saturday. White Sox: OF Avisail Garcia, who returned from the DL on Tuesday, said he still has inflammation in his right thumb but hopes to play through it. “Sometimes it hurts, sometimes no,” he said.   UP NEXT Astros righty Brad Peacock (10-1, 3.20 ERA) will be matched against lefty Carlos Rodon (1-4, 4.66) in the series finale on Thursday night. Peacock got the win in his last start against Toronto despite allowing seven runs in six innings. Rodon tied his season high with 11 strikeouts against Boston on Aug. 4. (© 2017 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.)

Byron Bell enjoying NFL life in his home state

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Byron Bell is living the life. The Texas native is wearing the star of the Dallas Cowboys and competing for a starting job on the team’s offensive line.

Bell signed a one year deal with the Cowboys back in March.

At the moment, Bell is getting reps as the number one left guard. The 6-foot-5, 310 pound Bell worked hard for his moment, especially on the scale.

“He’s worked very hard to get his weight down and he came in in really good shape,” said Cowboys Head Coach Jason Garrett. “You couple that with the fact that he’s played a lot of football in this league at a couple of different positions, you see some of the real positives of what he brings to our team.”

Bell used will power to help himself get in shape, passing up one of his favorite treats.

“Trying to push away from eating Whataburger every night and eating salads,” said Bell. “But, I got the weight down. I feel better.”

He feels a lot better than he did last season. Bell had to come back from a severe ankle injury that ended his season before it started with the Tennessee Titans in 2016. It was Bell’s second year with the team. He handled it well.

Bell has always been a tough guy and got even tougher in college at the University of New Mexico.

“My time in Albuquerque helped me out a lot. Coach Long and Coach Lenzmeier, those guys, even Coach Locksley and Coach Blackshear, when the next staff came in,” said Bell. “They helped me out a lot just being tough and physical.”

Bell is going into his seventh season in the NFL. He signed with the Carolina Panthers as an undrafted free agent out of New Mexico in 2011.


Filed under: Home, Sports

2 Investigators: Dr. Rudd’s Surprising Legal Ally

(CBS) – Thomas Rudd, the former Lake County, Illinois coroner facing perjury charges, has an unlikely ally: the election lawyer who brought about his downfall. The 2 Investigators have learned that a motion has been filed to dismiss perjury charges against Rudd, who may be the most famous former coroner in Illinois.
rudd 2 2 Investigators: Dr. Rudds Surprising Legal Ally

Former Lake County Coroner Thomas Rudd. (CBS)

Last fall, when Democrat Rudd ran for re-election, Lake County Republicans retained election lawyer Burt Odelson to examine Rudd’s petitions for the party primary. Odelson zeroed in on five petition pages signed by Rudd. The attorney says he suspected Rudd himself had not collected the signed pages, which would be illegal. “He was a novice in running for election. And that’s all it was,” Odelson tells CBS 2’s Brad Edwards. Rudd withdrew from the race when the petitions were challenged; he later lost as a write-in candidate. “I did the honorable thing. I consulted an election attorney, and we decided to withdraw,” Rudd says. After losing, Rudd was charged with five felonies over those petitions. Odelson, the expert who scuttled Rudd’s plans, suggests the prosecution is overkill. “I’ve seen people prosecuted for falsely signing their name intentionally and they knew they were doing wrong — but not an honest mistake,” Odelson says. So, now the attorney hired to get rid of Rudd — and did — is joining Rudd’s defense. Odelson says the felony charges should not have been filed. He speculates someone has “an ax to grind” against the ousted coroner. Indeed, Rudd had enemies. He was first to raise the specter of suicide in the death of Fox Lake Police Lt. Joseph Gliniewicz. Rudd also questioned the murder conviction of daycare worker Melissa Calusinski. The office of Lake County State’s Attorney Mike Nerheim, a Republican, did not respond to requests for comment for this report. Nerheim’s office is not handling the actual case in court, to avoid any conflicts. Odelson worries the case itself will scare off future office-seekers. “It sends a terrible message,” he says. As for Rudd, he faces five years for each perjury charge, if convicted. “I shouldn’t be spending any time in jail for a clerical error,” he says. The judge will likely decide on the motion to dismiss within the next week. The trial is slated to begin later this year.

3 Vehicles Catch Fire On I-880 In Fremont

FREMONT (CBS SF) — All northbound lanes of Interstate Highway 880 in Fremont have been reopened after multiple vehicles reportedly caught fire Wednesday evening. At 7:04 p.m., at least three vehicles were reported to be on fire on the highway, near the Fremont Boulevard offramp, CHP officials said. At least one vehicle was fully engulfed in flames. The incident prompted CHP officers to shut down all northbound lanes at 7:18 p.m. About an hour later, all lanes were reopened. It was not immediately clear if anyone was injured TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Bay City News Service contributed to this report.