BOSSIER PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Bossier residents are receiving phone calls from scammers posing as a Bossier Parish Sheriff’s deputy and trying to get money from them in order to keep them from going to jail, according to the Bossier Parish Sheriff’s Office.
The caller tells the resident that he is a deputy (by name) with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office, and there is a warrant for the victim’s arrest because the victim did not show up for federal court.
In order to keep from being arrested, the victim receiving the call is told he or she will have to pay money.
In one case today, the victim put the scammer on hold and contacted the Bossier Sheriff’s Office directly, and they told her this was a scam. When she switched back to the scammer and accused him of being an imposter, the scammer hung up.
“It’s so unfortunate that scammers continue to prey on the fear of folks with the threat of jail time,” said Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington. “That’s simply not how we operate, and I implore folks not to fall for it. Our deputies are not going to call you to say you owe money and tell you to send it in.”
Here are few safety tips to avoid being a victim of this scam and others:
• If you receive a phone call from the Bossier Sheriff’s Office or other law enforcement officer and someone says you owe money to keep from going to jail, please ask for their name and where they are calling. Then tell them you will call them back; instead, call the Bossier Sheriff’s Office at (318) 965-2203 or your local law enforcement agency and report the scam.
• Never pay anything over the phone…unless you initiated the phone call and you are confident in the transaction and business or person with whom you are dealing.
• Remember, like with other types of scams (someone calling to say you’ve won the sweepstakes or a new car…and all you have to do is pay a small processing fee). If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Anyone concerned about any outstanding fines, court fees, probation fees, or property taxes that might be owed you can contact the Bossier Sheriff’s Office Civil Department during normal working hours at (318) 965-3400 with any questions or come by the Bossier Parish Courthouse or either of the substations.
Or people also may call the Warrants Division of the Bossier Sheriff’s Office at (318) 965-3433 to inquire about a criminal warrant.
Scams or other types of crimes should be reported at any time to the Bossier Sheriff’s Office at (318) 965-2203.