PROVO, Utah — A Utah County man faces felony charges after he allegedly extorted his own grandmother for approximately $90,000 over the course of a year.
Officers were dispatched to perform a welfare check on the woman Sunday after receiving a report that she had “left church hysterical,” according to a press release from Provo police.
When officers contacted the woman, she told them she was in danger because her 21-year-old grandson, Derick Pettey, owed some money to “bad” people for drugs, the press release said.
Police said the woman gave Pettey money to pay off the “bad people” and keep herself and Pettey safe. Pettey allegedly told his grandmother that he was checking himself into a rehabilitation center for treatment of his drug addictions.
“Pettey’s alleged caseworker would then call the victim and report on Pettey’s progress. After the update however, the individual posing as Pettey’s caseworker would then demand more money to continue the treatments,” the press release said.
Pettey was booked into the Utah County Jail on charges of aggravated elder abuse andn theft by extortion, both second-degree felonies.
Provo police ask anyone who believes they might be a victim of extortion to call them at (801) 852-6210.