WKU Public Radio News Staff
Regional /Consumer Protection
Mon August 6, 2012
Jury Duty Scam Reported in Kentucky
A northeastern Kentucky sheriff says out-of-state callers are trying to get personal information and money by telling people they failed to appear in court for jury duty. Lewis County Sheriff Johnnie Bivens says multiple residents have complained about receiving phone calls from someone claiming they had been previously called for jury duty but failed to appear. Bivens says the caller then claims an arrest warrant has been issued.
Bivens told the Ledger Independent the caller will sometimes tell the person that the warrant will be canceled if they pay with a credit or debit card. Consumer protection specialists say members of the public should never give personal information or credit card numbers to someone they didn't contact. In some instances, callers will claim the warrant is a mistake and ask for personal information, like a Social Security number or birth date. Again, consumer protection specialists warn against providing that type of information.
In recent weeks scam artists have also been contacting Kentucky residents, claiming they can qualify for a federal "bail-out" program to pay their utility bills. The Kentucky Attorney General's office says no such program exists, and the ploy is an attempt to obtain personal information and bank account numbers.