Nearly a week ago, Loreal San Miguel said she had an alarming encounter in traffic.

"I was coming home pretty late," she said Tuesday. "I want to say it was past 11 p.m."

She said someone had pulled up next to her at a light in the area of Westheimer and Voss.

"They were kind of revving their engine a lot and when the light turned green they were motioning for me to roll my window down," she said.

San Miguel said she thought that was odd, so she just cracked it.

"They were telling me something is wrong with my tire and that I should pull over for them because he could fix it for me," she said. "Meanwhile I was panicking, I was obviously really scared--like what's wrong with my tire?"

She said she had had issues before with her tires--three blowouts recently--so she knew exactly what to look for.

"When I was driving, I couldn't feel anything wrong with my car and none of my alarms were going off," San Miguel said. "I thought it was maybe a joke or they were just messing with me but then when it happened the second time I was like okay this is very real and I definitely wanted to get a picture of it at least."

Days later, when she said it happened again, she tweeted a picture of the car she said is behind the scheme. That tweet has since been shared thousands of times.

Meantime, Kayla Cantu of Katy said a similar ruse happened to her recently when a man shined a flashlight at her on her way home from the Woodlands.

"He was like, 'Hey there's something wrong with your car and there are like sparks coming out from underneath it, there could be something wrong,'" Cantu said. "'You should probably pull over and let me look at it.' Don't do it: You could risk your life if you stop.'"

Cantu said she was followed for nearly 40 minutes on her way home to Katy.

Houston Police offer some tips for those who encounter this kind of scheme.

  • Don't pull over for anyone except if you know it's law enforcement
  • Call HPD's non-emergency line to report suspicious activity
  • If you think you have an issue, pull over to a well-lit populated area and call for help.