Originally Published: December 8, 2016 1:25 p.m.
Updated as of Friday, December 9, 2016 11:22 AM
PRESCOTT – Following a “deluge” of con artists impersonating court officers in phone calls, the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office is warning people not to fall for their demands for money, said Dwight D’Evelyn, YCSO spokesman.
A 60-year-old woman reported to the YCSO that she had been receiving phone calls from a person claiming to be "Captain Mark Boan," and demanding payment on a warrant for failure to report for jury duty.
She was convinced to pay $2,000 in pre-paid Visa cards before she realized that she was being conned and went to the Sheriff's Office to check into the matter on Thursday, Dec. 8.
On Monday, Dec. 5, a woman received a call from a person claiming to be a process server, and asking her to confirm her address because two warrants for failing to appear for jury service had been issued, D’Evelyn said.
The suspect named an actual Superior Court judge as having issued the warrants, and then demanded she pay a $1,000 immediately.
“The victim smartly questioned the validity of the call, did not comply, and verified with the local court that the call was a scam,” D’Evelyn said.
Another instance occurred Wednesday, Dec. 7, when a woman at work in Prescott was called with the same claim that a warrant had been issued, D’Evelyn said, and the suspect also demanded payment. The victim hung up on that caller, as well.
D’Evelyn said that several calls had come from a 928-area-code number with a 200-prefix.
“Remember,” he said, “law enforcement agencies and court officials will never call to solicit payment on a warrant in this manner,” and potential victims should not be fooled if the caller uses the real name of a court or law enforcement official.