GREENVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – The Darke County Sheriff’s Office is warning residents of a phone scam they say has been around before but is making another appearance. A similar scam occurred at this time last year.
The Sheriff’s Office said this particular telephone scam involves a person identifying himself as Chief Deputy Mark Whittaker of the Darke County Sheriff’s Office, trying to get money for what the caller says is “failing to report for jury duty or that a subpoena has been issued.” In cases such as these, the suspect will use the name of someone from the local community they are calling, according to the Sheriff’s Office, in an attempt to legitimize the scam.
The fictitious telephone number on the caller ID often shows up as a local number to lure unsuspecting victims. The caller will try to intimidate the victim into complying with the demands and may try to solicit information to account numbers or ask the person called to wire money. When the victim refuses to comply or questions the legitimacy of the call it is followed by threats of arrest.
The Darke County Sheriff’s Office said it does not operate this way and does not call and attempt to obtain money for failure to show for jury duty or any other court processes such as outstanding citations or warrants.
Deputies do commonly make phone calls to follow up on investigations and reports. A deputy will never ask you for money. If a person questions the validity of a deputy’s call, the caller will be asked to call back on a publicly known telephone number, 937-548-2020, and ask for the deputy who will then take the call.
Sheriff Toby Spencer is warning citizens not to fall for this scam. In all situations, it is important that citizens do not verify or provide any personal information over the phone unless they positively know or trust the caller. The Sheriff’s Office said the best course of action if you suspect you are receiving a scam call is to hang up immediately.
Any citizens who have suffered a monetary loss or feel they have compromised their personal identifying information can contact the Darke County Sheriff’s Office at 937-548-2020 or their local law enforcement agency.