(Walhalla, SC)-------------------------------------The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office has been receiving reports of a law enforcement scam in which actual names of Oconee County Sheriff’s Office employees have been used.
According to Sheriff Mike Crenshaw, the scam centers on potential victims receiving calls stating that they have missed a court appearance due to a Federal Grand Jury subpoena. The caller says that the potential victims must pay a fine in order to avoid jail time. Through a process known as spoofing, the scammer is calling from legitimate and official Oconee County Sheriff’s Office numbers.
Sheriff Crenshaw says that his name has been used in this scam and he has been contacted by potential victims. Also, Captain Jimmy Dixon’s name has been used in relation to this scam as well.
The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office would like to pass along these reminders to help everyone avoid being a victim of a law enforcement scam:
· One of the main weapons of scammers is to create a sense of urgency in those they are trying to scam by threat of arrest or other means. By creating panic, the potential victims may do something that they may not ordinarily do.
· Law enforcement will never contact someone and request money to either have a warrant recalled or charges dropped. Also, law enforcement will never contact anyone regarding the missing of a court date or request payment to recall a Bench Warrant for missing court. If you receive this type of call, hang up the phone. It is a scam!
· If a scammer requests payment via prepaid cards or an unusual type of payment, consider this to be a scam. The Sheriff’s Office has been receiving reports of scammers requesting payment via digital currency, such as bitcoin.
· If you are the victim of a scam, and have suffered financial loss or had personal identifying information compromised, contact law enforcement and request that a report be filed with the agency in the jurisdiction in which the scam occurred. Businesses may require that a police report be filed before they begin an investigation or before any possibility of restitution on their part.