Kanawha County Police are advising residents to be aware of a scam phone call where the caller is pretending to be a sheriff’s deputy. During the call they will instruct the caller to buy prepaid cards to pay their fines and avoid jail time.
In a news release Kanawha County sheriff’s Sgt. Brian Humphreys said he received five reports about the scam on Tuesday.
During the call, the scammers have told victims they missed jury duty, failed to pay taxes or had other violations that will result in an arrest warrant if they are not paid. Another approach is they claim that a relative of the person receiving the call is in jail and needs money to pay bond or fines.
Even though the person may know things about you that doesn’t mean they are a law enforcement officer. There are many different ways a criminal can learn personal information about the person they contact, including social media accounts.
While it is possible that deputies could make a phone call regarding an active warrant, they will never instruct someone to purchase a prepaid card to make a payment while doing so.
If someone receives a call like this, the Kanawha County Police advise the person who receives the call to hang up immediately. If there is any question with regards to whether or not the call is legitimate then call the sheriff’s office’s 24-hour phone line at 304-357-0169.