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Scammers calling about bogus arrest warrants add a ‘photo ticket’ twist

By ThisIsReno

WCSO NEWS RELEASE

washoe_county_sheriffs_office_logoThe Washoe County Sheriff’s Office is sending out a warning to area residents today that there appears to be a new twist to the “arrest warrant” scam in which scammers pose as Sheriff’s Office personnel to fraudulently obtain money from innocent victims.

The Sheriff’s Office has received a number of reports this week from residents who said they were called by individuals claiming to represent the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office and saying that the resident owes money on an outstanding traffic ticket.

The caller tells the resident that the resident had been cited for speeding based on a “photo ticket” from an intersection camera. The resident is told that they missed a court date set in the ticket and now owe a certain amount of money.

“This new twist to the arrest warrant scam is concerning to us because we are being told that the callers, who are representing themselves as personnel from the Sheriff’s Office, sound very professional and legitimate and are establishing a scenario that sounds believable to the resident,” Washoe County Undersheriff Tim Kuzanek said.

“Based on this information, we want residents to know that the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office does not use traffic cameras posted at intersections to issue traffic citations, nor do we negotiate fines over the phone as has been the case with some of the residents who have received these fraudulent phone calls,” Undersheriff Kuzanek said.

Anyone who has been a victim of this scam, or who receives such a call, is encouraged to take down as much information as possible, such as a name and call back number, without giving any information away. Then, immediately contact the Washoe County Sheriff’s Office at (775) 785-WCSO (9276).

For informaton about how to protect yourself from Identity Theft and other safety tips, visit the “Staying Safe” page at WashoeSheriff.com.

The Washoe County Sheriff’s Office celebrated 150 years of proud service and community partnership in 2011. Sheriff Michael Haley is the 25th person elected to serve as the sheriff of Washoe County. His office continues to be the only full service public safety agency operating within northern Nevada and is responsible for operating the consolidated detention facility, regional crime lab, Northern Nevada Counter Terrorism Center, Internet Crimes against Children Task Force, court security, service of civil process, traditional street patrols and Regional Animal Services.