Some area residents have recently been scammed out of $1,000 worth of gift cards by callers pretending to be current or retired Douglas County Sheriff’s Office deputies.
If this ploy sounds familiar, it should: aggressive callers pose as law enforcement officers and attempt to use fraudulent charges and threats of arrest to take money from victims. The calls may even appear to come from sheriff’s office phone numbers.
Callers often state that the individual has a warrant for failure to appear in court or for failing to report for jury duty. The caller then tells potential victims that they can avoid arrest and jail time if they make an immediate payment.
If you receive a call like this, sheriff’s office spokesperson George Diepenbrock on Friday provided these instructions to deal with it:
“If you are contacted by someone reporting to be from the Sheriff’s Office and you are concerned about the legitimacy of the call:
Let the caller know you will hang up and call right back to verify their identity.
Call our main office number (785-841-0007) to verify their name and if they have indeed contacted you; do NOT call the number they provide you.”
According to an alert issued recently about similar scams, “No deputy or employee of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office will ever ask you to give them money—not if you have an outstanding warrant, not to avoid an arrest, not to avoid a ticket. If someone presents themselves as one of our deputies or employees and states you have legal issues and need to pay a sum of money immediately, they are attempting to scam you.”