Officials warn of jury duty scam after woman loses $1,300

Crime
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Smith County officials are warning citizens about scam artists calling victims and threatening them about missed jury duty.

Smith County Jury Coordinator Lisa Bennett two people reported the scam this. People allegedly claiming to be law enforcement are threatening fines or be arrested for missing jury duty.

On Wednesday, an 80-year-old woman was targeted, but she did not fall victim. On Thursday, another Smith County woman fell victim and gave the scammer $1,300 over the phone. The case has been turned over to authorities.

In the scam, the caller tells the victim to place money on a green dot card, which is similar to a debit card. The caller stays on the phone with the person while they go to the store, buy the cards and tell the caller the card number so they can get to the money before hanging up.

“Nobody from the Smith County Sheriff’s Office is going to call you and request money over the phone in any form or fashion,” Bennett said.

She said the scam also hit Smith County back in 2014 and 2015.

Anyone living in Tyler city limits who receives this type of  call should contact officials at 903-531-1000. For those victims who live outside city limits, call 903-566-6600 and make a report.

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