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Beware: Holiday phone calls about nude photos, arrest warrants may be money scams

‘That’s not how it works’: York Co. sheriff’s spokesman sends warning about scammers

Police in York County, South Carolina are warning of two phone scams involving phony claims of callers to be sheriff’s deputies and another about fake arrest warrants involving nude photos.
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Police in York County, South Carolina are warning of two phone scams involving phony claims of callers to be sheriff’s deputies and another about fake arrest warrants involving nude photos.

Deputies in York County are warning everyone about two phone scams where callers are asking for money to clear up arrest warrants.

During the holiday season, scams in York County tend to increase, police said.

Both calls are phony but use technology to at times even show the incoming number as being from the sheriff’s office, said Trent Faris, spokesman for the York County Sheriff’s office.

In one scam, the caller claims to be a York County Sheriff’s office sergeant. The caller claims to be a Sgt. Jason Cook from the York County Sheriff’s office. The scammer says the gift card will pay the fine for the warrant.

There is no Jason Cook at the sheriff’s office, Faris said.

“This scam has been going around for years. Don’t fall for this scam,” Faris said. “The scammers will not want the physical gift card. They just want the account number on the card.

“No sheriff’s deputy will ever, for any reason, ask for money about an arrest warrant.”

The second scam involves the Plenty of Fish dating app, Faris said. The scammer sends nude photos of a girl, believed to be around 18 years of age, Faris said.

Within a day the photo recipient receives a call from someone posing as a detective, stating the recipient now has an arrest warrant for sending and receiving nude photos of a juvenile.

“In this case, the “Dad” of the juvenile calls the victim later demanding $1,200 to “make it go away,” Faris said

Officers with the sheriff’s office have been investigating two of these cases, Faris said. A suspect in the dating app case answered the phone when called by real sheriff’s office police, Faris said. The suspect cursed at the officers before hanging up, Faris said.

All the cases remain under investigation.

Capt. Mark Bollinger of the Rock Hill Police Department said common scams involve hurricane victims.

“The best advice to people is that a police officer will never ask for money over the telephone,” Bollinger said.

In 2017, 1,193 people in South Carolina were victimized by scams, according to the Website yourlocalsecurity.com.

For safety tips visit www.fbi.gov/scams-and-safety/common-fraud-schemes.

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