Scam alert: Calls not from Douglas County deputies |

Scam alert: Calls not from Douglas County deputies

Staff Reports

On Monday, several residents said that someone claiming to be from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office told them they owed money on a civil case.

Undersheriff Paul Howell said the caller said he was Lt. Mike Sharp calling from the phone number (775) 375-5858, located in Winnemucca.

When residents returned the call they were told all deputies are currently busy on other lines and to leave a name and telephone number for a return call.

“None of the complainants have given any money and have contacted this agency to verify the authenticity of the message,” Howell said.

Peace officers don’t call to demand payment for any reason, Howell said.

“If a citizen were to have a warrant of arrest an officer would contact them and place them under arrest, or advise them to turn themselves in on the warrant,” he said. “Any call from a person who states they represent any entity in the judicial system and demands money is a fraud.”

Anyone with information should contact Investigator Leland Love reference case No. 16SO35812 at 775-782-9905

This is not the first time someone claiming to be from the Sheriff’s Office has called someone identifying himself as a deputy from the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office.

“The individual tells the resident that they failed to show up for jury duty, and has an active warrant,” Sheriff’s spokeswoman Sgt. Bernadette Smith said earlier this month. “The impersonator even states dates of notices and case numbers.”

Key to recognizing the scam is the way the callers seeks to be paid.

“The impersonator instructs the residents to wire money or to purchase a pre-paid credit card and they will call back to obtain the credit card numbers,” Smith said.

She asked anyone who’s received such a call to report it to the sheriff’s office.