JEFFERSON COUNTY, Colo. — The jury duty scammer who first targeted citizens in Jefferson County in early September is still at it.
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office has received more than ten reports from citizens who say a man pretending to be a Major with the sheriff’s office called them.
He introduced himself as “Major Tom Wilson,” and told the victims they missed jury duty and were going to be arrested according to sheriff’s office spokesman Mark Techmeyer.
“The suspect told the victims they could avoid going to jail if they would go to Wal-Mart or Walgreens and buy $1000 “Green Dot MoneyPak” cards. The cards would supposedly cover the fines for failing to appear for jury duty,” Techmeyer says.
“The suspect instructed the victim to buy the cards, scratch off the numbers on the back, and provide those numbers to the suspect. Anyone the cardholder shares the number with, has instant access to the cash.”
Techmeyer says the sheriff’s office will never call a citizen and ask for payment of any kind.
On October 25, the suspect convinced a victim to buy$6,000 worth of Green Dot MoneyPak cards before she suspected a scam.
The next day, the suspect insisted on staying on the phone with the victim as he drove to the store to buy the cards.
“While on the way to the store, the victim was pulled over by law enforcement. A Jeffco deputy got on the phone with the suspect, and the suspect was brazen enough to insist that he was who he said he was,” Techmeyer says.
“The suspect said if the deputy did not allow the victim to continue to the store, he would have the deputy disciplined. He told the deputy did not allow the transaction to continue, he would have the deputy arrested for interfering and contempt of court.”
Green Dot MoneyPak cards are reloadable debit cards. They’re easily available and typically used by people who don’t have bank accounts.
Scammers like them because they’re not linked to bank accounts and they are not traceable.
If you live in unincorporated Jefferson County and received a similar call, you’re encouraged to report it at 303-271-0211. The sheriff’s office tip line for information about crimes is 303-271-5612.