Phone scams are common across the nation. In the past couple weeks, Loudoun residents may have received calls from people posing as Dominion Energy, threatening to cut the power off unless victims pay fake bills through money cards. This week, it’s the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office.
The victim received a call from a person identifying themselves as “Sergeant Jackson from the LCSO” on July 14, according to LCSO’s daily incident report. The caller went on to state that the victim missed his jury duty date and there was a warrant for his arrest. The victim was instructed to purchase MoneyPak cards and provide the numbers to the caller.
The caller then instructed the victim to go to the LCSO headquarter to obtain his court date. The caller was on the phone with the victim throughout the entire process. The victim contacted LCSO when he came to the headquarters and nobody was there to meet him and learned this was a scam.
“This is unfortunately not an unusual scam,” LCSO Public Information Officer Kraig Troxell said.
There is no Sergeant Jackson with the LCSO, and this is a name that’s used in scams all over the country, Troxell said. Oftentimes scammers will tell victims they have fines for traffic offenses or a missed jury duty court date and they must pay or face arrest.
“They use that fear and intimidation”, Troxell said. “The scammers will use all different types of tricks.”
LCSO would never call county residents to collect fine, and no government agency or business would collect payment in the form of money cards like iTunes gift cards, GreenDot or MoneyPak cards, he said. Troxell encourages all Loudoun residents to hang up on calls they suspect may be scams and call the agency the caller identified as to confirm what the caller is saying.
He also said to find agencies’ phone numbers online and not to call numbers provided by the original caller, as some scammers have used local 703 numbers or even used apps to make it look like they are calling from the Loudoun County Sheriff’s Office or other agencies.