PCSO warns public about ongoing phone scam

Published 6:54 pm Tuesday, April 16, 2024

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A new scam in Pike County is targeting family members of inmates at the Pike County Jail.

Pike County Jail Administrator Kelley Barron said her office had received several calls from people indicating scammers were pretending to be bail bondsmen. Barron said the scammers were contacting family members of inmates and asking them to pay bail on Apple Pay or a pre-paid card.

“That’s not how the bail bonds business works,” Barron said. “We give the inmates a phone call and they can inform their family of county-approved bail bondsmen. If you get a call like that, call us and check on it. Don’t send money over CashApp or anything like that.”

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Barron said the Pike County Sheriff’s Office was investigating how the scammers were figuring out who inmate family members were.

Pike County Sheriff Russell Thomas said scammers were getting the inmates names and charges off the PCSO website. But, he said the PCSO hadn’t determined how the scammers were obtaining contact information for the inmates’ families.

Barron said scammers were also contacting people and telling them there was a warrant for their arrest and they could pay a fine and not be arrested. She said the PCSO was not going to call people who had warrants for their arrest for payment of fines.

Barron said scams of this type were becoming more common and the PCSO was aware of four victims of this particular scam.

She reminded people not to pay money to anyone that contacted them over the phone.