San Diego, California - If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be with the Sheriff's Department demanding money from you, HANG UP! IT IS A SCAM!
Scammers are trying to prey on people's fears to rip them off. Here's how the Phone Scam works:
The Phone Call: To sound believable, scammers will use a real employee's name or Sheriff's Department telephone number which can be found online. They will also use Caller ID "spoofing," which makes it appear as though the call is coming from a Sheriff's Station, Substation, facilities or court offices. Recently, a man claiming to be Lieutenant Todd Frank (or another Sheriff's employee) with a phone number of (858) 386-0524 (or a number that seems to be from the Sheriff's Department) has been making the calls. This phone number is not associated with the Sheriff's Department.
The Scare Tactic: The caller will try to intimidate you and as a scare tactic will say: "You have a summons to appear in court for missing jury duty. Pay up or you will be arrested!" or "You have a warrant out for your arrest. Pay up or you will end up in jail!"
The Hook: These scams play on your fears. You want to be a law abiding citizen and you surely don't want to end up in jail so in a panic you end up giving personal information or money to defuse the situation.
RED FLAG: Phone + Money = Scam. If you receive a phone call and someone is asking for money, STOP! IT IS A SCAM!
FACT: No employee of the Sheriff's Department will ever contact members of the public by telephone to demand money or any other form of payment. If you get this type of call, HANG UP IMMEDIATELY.
FACT: Outstanding warrants cannot be resolved over the phone. Warrants can only be cleared through the court. People with outstanding warrants are encouraged to turn themselves in Monday through Friday during business hours at any one of the Sheriff's Court Facilities. For more information or to check if you have an outstanding warrant, visit www.sdsheriff.net/courts.
FACT: Confirm jury service by calling the Superior Court of California at (619) 4505757, press "0" to talk to a person.