Sheriff Nick Chimienti Jr.
The Dauphin County Sheriff’s Office once again is issuing a warning about a phone scam targeting Dauphin County residents. Scammers now are targeting medical professionals as a woman lost $4,000 on Friday who was worried she would loose her medical license for failing to appear for jury duty.
Sheriff Nicholas Chimienti Jr. has received numerous complaints in the last few days regarding scammers claiming to be from the Sheriff’s Office. The scammers indicate to the victim they are in contempt of court for failure to show up for jury duty or for other assorted reasons at the Dauphin County Courthouse.
Scammers indicate that a judge has issued an arrest warrant and the victim will be taken directly to prison. Scammers are using the real names of Deputy Sheriff's and Judges employed at the Dauphin County Court House.
Scammers initially tell victims they must report to the courthouse with $2,000 cash or be detained. The scammer then requests the victim to purchase prepaid Visa cards or Money-Pak cards in $500 increments at local pharmacies, businesses or grocery stores. The scammer tells the victims they must stay on the telephone the entire time while the victim drives to a local store/pharmacy to purchase money cards. The scammers are very convincing and intimidating as this is all part of the scam as they will talk victims into revealing the redemption code on the back of the cards and retrieve the money instantly.
The DCSO is warning local clerks/retailers of grocery stores or pharmacies, to be on the lookout for anyone trying to purchase these cards in $500 increments while observing victims on the phone making these purchases as they should be aware and notify the victim ASAP. We must all look out for each other!!!
These calls are bogus and do not originate from the Dauphin County Sheriff’s Office !! If you or someone you know receives a threatening call from someone claiming to be from the Sheriff’s office, do not share any sensitive information with them and report the call.
The Sheriff’s Office does not require anyone to provide sensitive information in any telephone call, nor to purchase any kind of monetary device to avoid arrest. These scammers use a spoofing websites to show the phone call originates from the Sheriff’s Office on the victims phone as it will indicate on caller ID the actual phone number, leading a victim to believe it is legitimate call from the Dauphin County Sheriff’s Office. This is a very deceptive scam and very hard to trace.
Anyone who has been a victim of this scam should try to document as much information as possible, such as a name, call-back number or email address, without giving any of their personal information away. If you are a victim of this scam please save your receipts for the purchase of the cards. The worst part of this type of scam is people will not report this crime as it is quite embarrassing to the victims to actually report it.
People receiving a suspicious call or phone message and victims should immediately file a complaint regarding these scams by calling their local police or the attorney general’s Bureau of Consumer Protection’s toll-free helpline number at 800-441-2555.
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