A scam that has been used before in our area is making the rounds again in a parish right next to Acadiana. The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office wants people to know that they have received several reports from people about the scam.

It seems like anytime we turn around lately there is some sort of scam that we have to tell you about. Unfortunately, it really is the case. Scams are becoming more prevalent each day, and we try to do our best to give you an edge so you can defend yourself.

Let this sink in for a minute. The makers of the app Truecaller estimate that 70 million people in America fell victim to a phone scam last year in which they lost money. That's 70 million people which translates into one of every five people in our country who have been scammed out of money over the phone.

Just today a colleague was telling me a story about a gentleman in a grocery store where the staff was trying to explain to this man that buying a $500 gift card for someone over the phone means he will likely never get his money back.

Money Burning
JP Valery via Unsplash.com
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Something else to let sink in is the fact that tens of billions of dollars are stolen in these types of scams. I can see how it's easy to get caught in a scheme especially if the person calling says they are a sheriff's deputies and there is a a warrant out for your arrest!

If someone calls you claiming to be from law enforcement saying you did not report for jury duty and now there is an arrest warrant out for you, don't believe what they are saying.

According to Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso this is not how the process works. If someone calls you asking for your personal information and/or money then it's a scam or you are going to be thrown in jail, then it's a scam.

The best thing to do when something like this happens is to hang up the phone. Even if the phone number appears to be from a legitimate law enforcement agency there are devices that can allow any scammer to make it appear that any agency is calling you.

It's dangerous and tricky so don't get scammed.

Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Cruiser
Photo Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Facebook
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Tony Mancuso's information to people via their Facebook page:

Sheriff Mancus wants residents to know that the majority of the time a valid arrest warrant is served in person by law enforcement officials; however, in some circumstances a law enforcement officials may call you if you have a warrant, but under no circumstance will that officer ever ask for money or any form of payment.

And don't be shy about explaining to someone that you have done this. It's the scammers who should be ashamed or made to feel guilty. You have done nothing wrong. Reporting these things to law enforcement gives the power back to you and not the criminals.

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