PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - SCAM ALERT!
The Bay County Sheriff's Office has issued a scam alert Thursday after getting three reports of a jury duty scam Wednesday.
Officials say in each of these incidents, the scam starts with a phone call to an office informing the owner of a business a warrant has been issued for them because they didn't respond to a jury duty summons. They say the caller identifies himself as Captain Smiley or Officer Smiley of the Bay County Sheriff's Office.
They say the scammer then says to avoid an embarrassing arrest, the business owner needs to pay a fine and that fine must be paid by purchasing gift cards.
Sheriff Tommy Ford says the Bay County Sheriff's Office will never contact a person by phone and ask for a fine to be paid with a gift card.
They say while only business owners have been affected so far... anyone could become a target of this scam.