County sheriff warns residents of phone scam

The Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office is cautioning residents of a phone scam that’s reached more than a dozen people.

In a statement released March 24, staff with the sheriff’s office said law enforcement impersonators are calling residents in the community to tell them they’ve failed to appear for jury duty, sometimes using the names Jason Cook or Ryan Thompson. In many instances, the callers ask if they have missed the jury notice and proceed to request $500 in bail to avoid arrest.

Individuals who pick up the phone are often directed to call 360/768-4552, extension 3 for more information. The number leads to a recording that sounds as though the caller has reached a law enforcement agency.

“The public is reminded that warrants and court fines or payments are never handled this way,” read the statement. “Never agree to meet the caller in person, obtain cash cards, provide card pins or other payment over the phone.”

Calls received are often hard to trace and originate from locations across the globe. The Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office encourages people who receive these calls to hang up immediately and refrain from providing personal information.

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