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Crooks are at it again in Bossier Parish and the sheriff is warning everyone about this phone scam that is duping people into believing the call is actually coming from the Bossier Parish Sheriff's Office.

Here's what's going on. Apparently these slimy scammers are placing phone calls to Bossier citizens falsely claiming these individuals have warrants out for their arrests and that the simple purchase of a pre-paid debit card will help them avoid going to jail.

According to Sheriff Whittington, “This is nonsense and not the way the Sheriff’s Office operates.” “It’s so unfortunate that scammers continue to prey on the fear of folks with the threat of jail time. Our deputies are not going to call you to say you owe money and tell you to send it in.”

The Sheriff's Office provided a few safety tips to avoid being a victim of this scam and others:

  • If you receive a phone call from the Bossier Sheriff’s Office or other law enforcement officer and someone says you owe money to keep from going to jail, please ask for their name and from where they are calling. Then tell them you will call them back; instead, call the Bossier Sheriff’s Office at (318) 965-2203 or your local law enforcement agency and report the scam.
  • Never pay anything over the phone, unless you initiated the phone call and you are confident in the transaction and business or person with whom you are dealing.

Out of curiosity, I researched to see just how many of these scams are perpetrated on American citizens each year and couldn't believe what I read from the Federal Trade Commission:

Each year, the FTC takes a hard look at the number of reports people make to our Consumer Sentinel Network. In fact, during 2019, we got more than 3.2 million reports to the FTC from you.

Read that again! 3.2 MILLION in 2019 alone. And that was just the number of people who called in to complain.

Trust that right now, someone, somewhere is making the attempt to steal hard earned cash from another, so don't allow yourself or your loved one, to be victimized. It's too easy to hang up the phone and do a little investigating on your own.

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