McMinn County Sheriff Warns Residents of New Phone Scam Circulating

McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy is warning residents of a scam call that was recently reported to the sheriff’s office. The caller targeting McMinn County residents alleges he or she is from the McMinn County Sheriff’s Office Warrant Department and demands money in order to “avoid jail time.”

Scammers use this type of technique to target local residents as a phishing scam to extort money.

“It’s happening again! Scammers are once again making calls claiming to be the McMinn Co Sheriff’s Office Warrant Department, or that you’ve missed a court date or jury duty, claiming you can pay a fee to avoid jail time. Some are actually using names of our employees. THIS IS A SCAM,” Sheriff Guy said in a Facebook post Monday.

Guy added in his post that the sheriff’s office does not call residents about warrants or try to collect fees over the phone.

“If you really have a warrant, we will come and speak with you personally about it,” the sheriff’s post explained.

Guy said, “If you receive a call like this, HANG UP IMMEDIATELY…….or just tell them you are a career criminal, that you go to jail all the time and you’re not scared to go again, and that you are good friends with the Sheriff.”

Scammers use many tactics to sound and appear credible, such as sometimes providing information like badge numbers, names of actual law enforcement officials and federal judges, and courthouse addresses, according to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). Scammers may also spoof their phone numbers to appear on caller IDs as if they are calling from a government agency or the court, the DOJ notes.

The U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) are urging all recipients of the scam calls to report them to their local FBI office and file a consumer complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which can detect patterns of fraud from the information collected and share that data with law enforcement.

– – –

Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network.




Related posts