LEHIGH ACRES, Fla. - A Lehigh Acres woman is getting threatening phone calls... from family members! Problem is, they're not the ones calling.
They have no idea who's calling, why they're calling, and how the caller knows exactly what they're doing. This family, who asked to remain anonymous, feels like they're stuck in scene from a scary movie. But at this point, there's not much deputies can do.
The family's nightmare started with a phone call. "About quarter to 11, my daughter and her friend were outside in my van getting her friend's stuff, and somebody called her phone from my phone number and it was a man," the woman said. "He said, 'I see you're outside, what the... not so nice word...are you doing in your mom's car, and he told her he was on the roof and he was watching her."
Then, her phone rang. "It was her (my daughter's) phone number. It was the same man. And he told me he was going to come inside and do not some nice things to me," the woman said.
She hung up. He called again. "And he said, I'm on my way inside."
Terrified, she called the Lee County Sheriff's Office. A deputy searched the house, but found nothing. "Then, he started calling my younger daughter, who was at her girlfriend's house, telling her where she was, and when she got there."
The caller was even "kind" enough to leave them with a goodnight call, letting them know he'd be watching. After a sleepless night, the calls continued. So, how is this happening?
It could be as simple as a cell phone application. Here's how it works: you type the number you want to call. Then, you type the number you want to appear on the receiver's phone. There's even the option of changing your voice.
The Sheriff's Office says, for now, this is a "nuisance call," given there was no imminent danger. It's nearly impossible to track.
"There have to be laws against him watching my children outside or telling me what I'm doing in my own home," the woman said. "I want to move."
Calls like this could soon be illegal. In April, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1258, "The Truth in Caller ID Act." If passed, it would be unlawful to use the cell phone apps "to defraud or deceive."