Sheriff Warns Public About Jury Duty Phone Scam

Oakland County, MI – Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard cautioned residents to be wary of telephone scams in which a caller threatens your arrest or asks for a cash bond because you supposedly failed to appear for federal jury duty.

Bouchard said two separate complaints were made on Monday by residents who came to the Sheriff’s Office to turn themselves in for arrest warrants they soon learned did not exist.

“These scams are nonstop with one common thread,” Bouchard said. “They always demand money over the phone in some form or fashion. No law enforcement agency would do that. Whether they say it is the Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, the IRS, or whatever the flavor of the day is, it is a scam! Hang up.”

In each instance, the caller identified himself as an Oakland County Sheriff’s Office deputy and threatened the residents with arrest for failing to appear for jury duty in federal court. The first resident said the caller told him there were two warrants for his arrest.

The second resident said the caller claimed there was a two-count warrant charging her with failure to appear.

The caller also demanded she provide a $5,000 bond to avoid arrest.

Representatives from both the U.S. District Court – Eastern Michigan District in Detroit and Oakland County Circuit Court said delinquent jurors would be contacted by mail, never by phone. “We would send a letter to their home address,” Circuit Court Administrator Richard Lynch said. “We would never call.”

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