UPDATE: The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office has become aware the perpetrators of this scam are now using the names of Sheriff’s Office employees in this scam, and are providing actual Sheriff’s Office extensions and phone numbers. Citizens are reminded to call the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office if you have been victimized by this scam.
The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office is advising the public to be alert for a phone scam where the caller is posing as a sergeant with the Sheriff’s Office, and advising the targeted individuals they failed to report for jury duty, and now have active warrants for their arrest. The caller then advises the failure to appear warrant was issued by a judge, or the State’s Attorney for St. Mary’s County, and the individual must pay a fee to have the warrant withdrawn. The caller instructs the victim to obtain MoneyPaks from a local store; MoneyPaks are used to transfer funds to a prepaid card or a debit card. Once the individual has obtained the MoneyPaks they are instructed to contact a fraudulent bond company to pay the predetermined fee and have the warrant recalled. For the added appearance of legitimacy, the caller provides a number with a local area code, and a three digit prefix of numbers used locally, for the individual to contact. The number provided has an automated directory identifying as the St. Mary’s County Court Services Division. The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office wants to assure our citizens no legitimate law enforcement officer will call private citizens asking for MoneyPaks/money. The Sheriff’s Office also wants to remind citizens to never give out personal information to callers they do not know.
If you have been a victim of this jury duty scam, other phone scam, or have any information regarding these incidents, contact the Sheriff’s Office at (301) 475-8008. Citizens may remain anonymous and contact Crime Solvers at (301) 475-3333, or text a tip to "TIP239" plus their message to "CRIMES" (274637). Through the Crime Solvers Program tipsters are eligible for an award of up to $1,000 for information about a crime in St. Mary’s County that leads to an arrest or indictment.