ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A phone scam shut down a credit union and caused a major traffic jam near the University Of Central Florida late Thursday afternoon.
The bizarre chain of events started when a man walked into a Fairwinds Credit Union in east Orange County.
"We received information that a man came into the bank with a note asking for help," said Lt. Paul Hopkins of the Orange County Sheriff's Office.
Investigators said the man was seeking help because he apparently received a bizarre telephone call from someone asking for thousands of dollars.
"Part of the scam is he was told a family member was in danger," said Hopkins.
The victim believed the scammer.
Deputies said the unidentified victim has a wife and stepchildren.
They said he rushed to the credit union to get cash to help them but didn't take the time to explain the circumstances to the teller.
Eyewitness Sadiq Lakhani watched it unfold.
"It wasn't too crazy because he wasn't talking extremely loud. It was just kind of awkward because he was pacing back and forth asking. Then he left," said Lakhani.
The teller thought the 32-year-old man was a robber and activated the silent alarm.
Deputies rushed to the credit union and held the man at gunpoint.
Alafaya Boulevard was shut down during the incident.
When deputies questioned the man they realized he was the victim of a scam.
Investigators said they don't know who made the call to the victim, and the don't know from where the call originated.