Chesapeake Sheriff’s Office warns of phone scam

CHESAPEAKE, Va. (WAVY) — The Chesapeake Sheriff’s Office wants the public to know not to fall for the latest phone scam. Callers are identifying themselves as deputies from the Chesapeake Sheriff’s department, telling people they’ve missed jury duty and need to pay a fine.

Chesapeake police are investigating. City spokeswoman Kelly O’Sullivan said the department is investigating six cases, but so far, no one has fallen for the scam.

The scam goes like this: the caller identifies himself as a member of the sheriff’s office, as Capt. Hollowell, Sgt. Anderson or Detective Riley. The caller says the sheriff’s office has an outstanding warrant for the person receiving the call and instructs the receiver to call a number to find out more information.

Other fraudulent calls say the resident missed jury duty and has to pay a fine via credit card, debit card, Western Union or MoneyPak Green Dot card.

The phony callers have added credibility to their scam with software that makes their phone number appear in your caller ID as the City of Chesapeake. Investigators have traced the calls to disposable cell phones. Police say the people responsible for the calls can be charged with fraud and impersonating an officer.

Authorities advise that if you get a call from any city, saying you missed jury duty, it’s a scam. If you had missed jury duty, you would be contacted by letter or by summons.

“We would never ask anyone to pay over the phone,” said Sgt. David Rosado, spokesman for the sheriff’s office. “If you have to pay any amount for any type of summons, you come to the sheriff’s office to pay.”

City departments will never call you to pay fines over the phone. The sheriff’s office says if you get a call like that, don’t give out any information. Call the Chesapeake Police Department at (757) 382-6161.

10 On Your Side has reported similar telephone scams recently involving Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Portsmouth.

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