Watch Out For Jury Duty Phone Scam
Beware of a phone call coming from the U.S. Marshals Office telling you that you have a failure to report for jury duty. They're trying to get you to pay a false bail and pocket the money.
Emmett's police chief and mayor are trying to warn everyone of a phone scam that has made the rounds throughout the United States and now is targeting all of us in Idaho.
This is the jury scam.
To break it down a little bit, here's how it works:
A number will come in from what appears to be the Emmett number for the U.S. Marshals Office. If you see 208-398-3917, that's the number. In fact, it's smart to even put it in your phone and label it "jury scam" so you see it when it comes in, even.
I just thought of that idea (doing it now).
If you answer the call, you'll hear someone telling you that you've failed to report for federal jury duty and will be arrested. If you want to stay in real life and avoid going to jail, you will be given an option of paying a "bail". The bail, for one, isn't real. The amount is substantial.
The call will seem legit. The scammers will go as far as using Google Earth to get an exact idea of where you live and what's around you. On top of knowing about your personal life, they've been known to drop real-life officer's names in order to get you to believe them.
After reading all this, I'm sure you're not surprised to hear that it's working. Don't let this work on you.
Tip: Never give any credit card information over the phone to anyone you don't know.
A couple who was called by this number and told everything I just described never gave their credit card information. That wasn't the end of it all. The scammers actually called the sheriff's office and impersonated the husband. THE FREAKING HUSBAND THEY JUST TRIED TO SCAM! They threatened the police (as the husband) to shoot any deputy who set foot on the couple's property and tried to arrest them.
The scammers didn't get away with it because the real-life couple was on the phone with the sheriff's office at the same time the fake call came through.
If you receive this call, contact the state or federal court by calling the number on the court's website - not the number the scammers give you.
Please excuse me while I become paranoid of everyone and everything.