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Arkansas officials warn of jury duty scam after an uptick of victims

The scammers accuse the victim of missing jury duty, and say they must pay a fine immediately or be arrested.

FAULKNER COUNTY, Ark. — Multiple law enforcement agencies, cities, and attorneys are warning the public about a scam.

“It’s something that is happening everywhere, so we’ve got to stay vigilant and not let these scammers win,” said Ginger Stuart, Lonoke city attorney.

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Stuart is staying busy by taking an uptick of clients falling victim to a jury duty scam.

“The caller says that you’ve missed jury duty,” said Stuart. “If they don’t pay some kind of fine right away while the scammer is on the phone, then they say police will come arrest them right away.”

Even though this scam has been around for years, according to Stuart, even the smartest people are becoming victims.

That’s because not only are the scammers becoming better at their jobs, but more personal, too.

“They may have gleamed on social media or from some other method where they may talk about your child or your work place, or they may even call you at work,” said Stuart.

The Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office is warning of the same scam.

The caller is acting as a sheriff’s office representative while demanding payments through a gift card or pre-paid Visa.

“Once the scammer has those pieces of information, the card number and the pin number, then they have the money,” said Stuart. “There’s no real way of getting that back.”

Stuart is reminding people that no police agency or court will ever demand payments over the phone.

“As soon as you start to feel funny about it, hang up,” said Stuart. “Nobody is going to come arrest you that day for it.”

RELATED: Scams preying on desperate people during pandemic targeted in US crackdown

Stuart suggests doing your own investigation.

Check with your state and federal courts to see if you have been selected for jury duty.

You can also check with your local clerk’s office.

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