Police probe scams after firefighter’s death in arson blaze

HAMILTON, Ohio (AP) – Police in southwestern Ohio are investigating scam solicitations claiming to benefit the families of fallen police and firefighters.

Hamilton police spokesman Ed Buns says calls from at least three phone numbers have claimed to be from charities for police and firefighters killed in the line of duty. The calls were reported in the aftermath of the Dec. 28 death of Hamilton firefighter Patrick Wolterman.

Police say the only authorized funds are the Firefighter Wolterman Memorial Fund at First Financial Bank and a GoFundMe page through the Hamilton fire fighters’ local union.

Authorities announced Jan. 4 that the house fire has been ruled as arson, and Wolterman’s death is being investigated as a homicide. The 28-year-old firefighter died of injuries after crashing through a floor.

(Copyright 2016 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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