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NSO badge A local scam is now targeting members of the military. On July 5, 2018, the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office received a call from a Navy sailor that fell victim to the scam. She reported that the thief called her at work, and the caller ID read “Norfolk Sheriff’s Department.” The person claimed to be a Norfolk Deputy named Deputy Joshua Heart badge #1710D, and he told the sailor that she had missed jury duty twice, and there was a warrant out for her arrest. Unless she paid $4,000 in visa gift cards, she would be arrested. 

Due to her active-duty status, she said she was nervous and wanted to handle the situation right away. When she told the caller that she only had $2,000, he agreed to waive the rest of the fee. The victim bought the gift cards, gave the card numbers to the fake deputy, and mailed them to the requested address. After she did that, she called the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office with further questions. 

When our deputy spoke to the woman, he told her that it was a scam. The victim, who would like to remain anonymous, is reporting her case to the Norfolk Police Department economic crimes unit.

“Unfortunately, this common scam is now targeting members of our military. As Navy sailors go out to sea for months at a time, there is the fear of missing things at home. Thieves are preying on that vulnerability, claiming that the sailor missed jury duty notices,” Sheriff Joe Baron said. 

“An arrest could end a sailor’s career, and that is why this young lady acted so quickly. It is important that we share this story and continue to create awareness to prevent more people from falling victim to this scam.”

Things to Remember:
The Norfolk Sheriff’s Office and law enforcement agencies will never call you asking for money
Do not send money to anyone you do not know
Pass this information onto a friend - spreading the words is the simplest way to help prevent others from becoming victims of scams.

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