LEONARDTOWN, Md. – The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office reminds the public to beware of scammers posing as agency employees making demands for money.
Scammers will make telephone calls claiming to work for our agency, threatening citizens with arrest, claiming they have missed jury duty or that a family member has been jailed and will be moved out of state.
The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office will not call you about jury duty, to threaten you with arrest or to move a loved one from the St. Mary’s County Detention and Rehabilitation Center unless payment is made.
The Sheriff’s Office will not call you seeking funds, gift cards or bitcoin.
In a recent report of fraud, the scammer claimed to work for the Sheriff’s Office Corrections Division and told the victim that a loved one was jailed at the detention center and would be moved out of state unless the victim paid by bitcoin.
Some of the scams may seem legitimate as the numbers calling appear to be from St. Mary’s County Government or the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office. This is known as caller ID spoofing and it is the where the caller deliberately falsifies the information received on your caller ID to disguise their identity.
In another ruse, the scammer provides the name of an employee, and advises there is a warrant for the recipient for failure to pay civil fines and instructs the individual to bring cash to the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office. But to avoid being arrested on the way to the Sheriff’s Office, the individual is advised to pay a portion up front to the caller.
The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office reminds citizens that no law enforcement agency will attempt to collect money in lieu of serving an arrest warrant and will not request payment with a gift card of any kind.
If you have been the victim of a scam and wish to file a report please contact the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office at 301-475-8008 or online at https://www.firstsheriff.com/citizenreport/