It must be our turn again. Grays Harbor County residents are reporting an increase in scam phone calls claiming to be either from the Sheriff’s Office, or IRS.

      IRS Tax Crime division 1

Now, this one should be obvious, but this is a recording of a call received at my home number last week.

      IRS Tax Crime division 2

Sometimes you get a real person, but this type of call tries to get on your voicemail and leave a number hoping you will feel safer calling them back. If you have questions about a phone scam, NEVER call the number they provide.

Chief Criminal Deputy Steve Shumate with the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office said twice this past week residents have received calls from people claiming to be from the his office. An Aberdeen resident was scammed out of a substantial amount of money after fearing they had a warrant and providing information earlier this week.

One incident reported this week involved an Aberdeen resident being scammed out of a substantial amount of money. The victim had received a call at her work Wednesday, from a man that identified himself as Sgt. McCloud with the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office. The scammer said she had a warrant for failing to appear in municipal court. He convinced the victim to purchase MoneyPaks to take care of the warrant. Once the funds were surrendered the man told her to report to the sheriff’s office to complete the paperwork, which is when she learned there was no Sgt. McCloud.

On another recent incident, a South Beach resident received a call from a man claiming to be Sgt. Edward Johnson and telling them to call 214-204-1432 because they were being sued for criminal activity and good luck if they didn’t call. And then on another call to the same resident, a female claiming to be from the IRS said there was a criminal arrest warrant out against them and to call 636-275-0627 immediately to discuss this matter. Fortunately, Shumate said the residents recognized these calls as phone scams.

For our Neighborhood Block Watch groups, please forward this information on to your membership. And just as a reminder, the Sheriff’s Office will never call someone for payment of a warrant. If we want someone bad enough, we will go get them…