The Jacksonville Police Department has received a number of calls from out of state persons who have been contacted by a scammer claiming to be from a federal agency to inform the recipient that they are wanted for arrest. The scammer demands that the call recipient pay a sum in gift cards in order avoid arrest.
Technology allows the scammer to “spoof” or alter the Caller ID to make it appear that the call is coming from the Jacksonville Police Department’s Non-Emergency Numbers: 910 455-4000 and 910 455-1472.
“Neither the Jacksonville Police Department nor any other City agency will call you to demand payment and threaten arrest for any matter,” said Deputy Chief Patrick Traitor, who oversees the Administrative Services Division.
If you receive a phone call from someone claiming to be from the JPD or any other law enforcement or government agency and demanding payment, immediately hang up. Under no circumstances should you engage in conversation or provide any personal information. But, you are encouraged to make notes about what the caller says.
If you’ve been targeted by this scam, please report the incident by completing a report in the jurisdiction that you live in. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) also has a website for reporting these incidents: https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov/Information
The FTC has the ability to detect patterns of fraud from the information collected and share data with law enforcement.
As always, if you’re ever in doubt, please contact the Jacksonville Police Department at 910 455-4000, or your local law enforcement agency.