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Beware of jury duty scam by phone
The Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office, in conjunction with the office of the Kitsap County Clerk, is issuing an advisory to warn county residents of an ongoing scam that has restarted claiming victims recently in the West Sound area.
The clerk’s office has received information that a person purporting to be a representative of the sheriff’s office has been telephoning county residents to inform them that they have failed to appear for jury service and that a warrant will be (or has been) issued for their arrest.
Typically, the person receiving the call replies that they’ve not received any notice concerning jury duty service. The caller then informs the victim that they are still responsible for not appearing for jury duty as instructed. The caller further advises that to avoid arrest, they must pay a sum of money by credit card in order for the warrant to be “lifted” or “quashed.”
One resident recently was convinced by this type of call and paid out $1,000.
In simplest terms, this is a scam. Do not become a victim. In reality:
• The Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office has no role in jury administration. Court services and jury administration are under the sole purview of the county clerk.
• All communications regarding jury duty are sent to county residents in writing.
• Neither the sheriff’s office nor the county clerk’s office (or any department of county government) will initiate telephone communication with residents about jury duty, nor threaten anyone about missing jury duty. Warrants of arrest are not issued for failure to appear for jury duty service.
• Questions about jury service should be addressed to the Office of the Kitsap County Clerk, jury administration, at: (360) 337-7166, #6.
This scam was prevalent in the region last summer. For additional information: http://www.fbi.gov/news/stories/2006/june/jury_scam060206