Fraud Alert: Phone Calls From Newark Police Detective

Over the past week, the Newark Police Department has received calls from residents about a telephone scam involving a person posing as a Detective from the Newark Police Department.  During the call, the caller advises the victim that they failed to appear in court and there is a warrant for their arrest.  The caller requests payment via prepaid money card to avoid arrest.

Residents who receive such a call are advised to promptly hang-up.  The Newark Police will not ask someone to handle a warrant over the phone via prepaid money card.

This scam is well known to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).  Tips to avoid being the victim of a fraud and further information can be found here.

Residents can report receipt of a similar call to the FTC by clicking here.

UPDATE #1 – Arrest & Name Release – Shooting on Ethan Allen Court

During the course of this investigation, detectives determined that this shooting resulted from an altercation between roommates.  During the course of the altercation, one of the roommates, Desmond Elliott, 26, introduced a handgun. The other roommate, James Harland, 35, was shot multiple times by Elliott and died from his injuries. During the course of the altercation between Elliott and Harland, Elliott also suffered a gunshot wound to the wrist and was admitted to an area hospital.

Elliott was charged today by Newark Police with the following offenses:

  • Possession of a Firearm by a Person Prohibited (2 counts)
  • Receiving a Stolen Firearm

Elliott appeared before Justice of the Peace Court #11 by video from his hospital bed.  He was released on $43,000 unsecured bail.

This case remains under investigation by Newark Police detectives.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact Det. A. Whitt at (302) 366-7100 x. 3483 or awhitt@newark.de.us.  Additional methods for providing information to Newark Police can be found on our tips page, where reward information may also be available.


Original Release


Desmond Elliott