Hamilton County jury duty phone scammer tries to get $900 from woman
Scammers are always thinking of creative ways to take your money. A woman on Signal Mountain is the latest victim of a phone scam claiming she has a warrant out for her arrest for missing jury duty.
The woman said she never thought she would have fallen for something like this, but when a person told her it was her civic duty to appear in court, and she failed to do so, it frightened her.
Sherry Lawrence received a call around noon on Friday from a local number claiming she failed to appear in court on October 28th. Lawrence was confused. The caller told her she should have received a letter in the mail warning her about skipping out on her civic duty.
Lawrence tells us "Well, I never received anything in the mail and he said, 'Well you should have. Do you have problems with mail in your area?'"
She says the scammer told her he would have to look into it further.
"Because I was a no-show, he would have to talk with the county clerk and see how they wanted to proceed forward so I was like okay so he said I will have to call you back," Lawrence claimed.
He called back asking for her email address so he could send her documents from the county clerk.
"And then he sent me over those documents saying that I needed to pay $900. That was bond,” Lawrence said.
She was very concerned so she shared this information with a friend, who suggested she go to the clerk first.
Lawrence said, "I talked to the County Clerk there and she said, 'No, this is absolutely a scam.'"
The clerk told her scammers are so high-tech now that it's hard to tell what's real and what's fake.
"And it's scary, I was a wreck all day. Ruined my whole day, took up my whole day,” said Lawrence.
Lawrence was relieved after her visit to the courthouse but doesn't want anyone to fall victim.
"These scams will make you think it's real and they are fake, but check them out. I mean go to the courthouse, check them out, talk to the county clerk because this is happening in Chattanooga and it's scary,” Lawrence advised.
In this case, the scammer pretended to be working with Hamilton County Court officials. According to the Hamilton County Circuit Courts website, you will never be contacted by phone or email regarding jury service.