Over the last few weeks, our office has received a number of calls from people seeking advice on a current phone scam making the rounds in the Bellingham area. We’ve gathered up the information we have below so you can know what to expect should you find yourself targeted by the scammer.
The Phone Scam
Residents are receiving calls from a man introducing himself by the name of ‘Sgt. Smith’ or ‘Lt. Steven’, who is contacting to inform them of an outstanding federal warrant for their arrest—typically for missing jury duty. Targets of the phone scam are asked to pay a large fine to settle the violation or risk facing jail time.
What To Do
So far, despite attempts to capture the fraudster, local officials have been unsuccessful. The impostor has avoided a number of sting operations set up by deputies and remains at large.
If you receive a call from ‘Sgt. Smith’ threatening you with incarceration, you have no reason to panic. Law enforcement does not contact people via phone to resolve warrants or collect on debts. The Sheriff’s office strongly encourages targets of the scam to hang up on the impostor immediately and to not pay the fine he requests.
You can find more information on the phone scam at The Bellingham Herald.
In an earlier blog post, Adrian Madrone covered how to find out if you actually have a warrant for your arrest.
The law firm of Lustick, Kaiman & Madrone handles cases in DUI, felony and misdemeanor defense, as well as military and aviation law. If you would like to meet with us to discuss your case, please contact our staff at 360-685-4221. You can also access our form below for a free case evaluation: