Another person falls victim to jury duty phone scam

Published on Wednesday, 15 January 2014 10:18 - Written by

BY KENNETH DEAN, kdean@tylerpaper.com

The jury duty scam hitting Smith County continues as officials announced this morning another victim has been hit for $2,000.

Smith County Sheriff Spokesman John Moore said the person responsible for the scam is claiming to be with the Smith County Sheriff's Office and is contacting individuals claiming that they owe fines for missing jury duty.

"This is a scam and the person is not connected to the Sheriff’s Office," Moore said.

The latest victim comes on the heels of two days of warnings fromthe department about the scam.

Moore said he will be addressing the media about the problem this morning in hopes of informing residents.

Moore said the case began when a man contacted an individual in the Whitehouse area saying that they owed a fine for missing jury duty.

He instructed the individual to go to a local pharmacy and buy a pre-paid money card and then call back with the numbers on the back of the card.

"The individual did as instructed, but was then contacted again by the man saying that the card did not go through and that they would need to purchase another and call back with the new numbers. Before the person called back with the second set of numbers, they spoke with the Whitehouse Police Department who told them it was a scam," he said.

Moore said everyone who receives a jury summons should report for jury duty as instructed, but no member of the Smith County Sheriff's Office or any other law enforcement agency will contact a citizen and ask for a fine to be paid in this manner.

If anyone receives a similar call, please contact the Smith County Sheriff's Office immediately at 903-566-6600.