Meridian, Miss. A new scam has hit Meridian. In this scam, victims receive a call from someone claiming to be county attorney, Justin Cobb.
This scammer claims the victim missed jury duty and in order to avoid a warrant for their arrest they must submit money immediately with a prepaid card.
Jury scams are nothing new, but this one hits close to home because the scammer mentions local names of a judge, circuit clerk office, and has taken the identity of a local attorney.
Cobb says, "Obviously it bothers me. I always try to be very honest with people and it bothers me that someone is using my name to scam someone out of their money. I think it's wrong and if they are found, and hopefully will be found, they will be fully prosecuted. and I will do everything to make sure they are fully prosecuted."
Cobb called the number given to him by the victim and what he found was shocking. The scammer set up a voice mail box that said, "You've reached Justin Cobb of the Lauderdale County Court. If you leave your name, telephone number and warrant number you're calling about, we will return your call as soon as possible. Thank you."
This scam has already claimed one victim who submitted a payment of $1000. The scammer told this person that the payment didn't go through and had them submit it again. After the scammer asked them to do it a third time, the victim knew something wasn't right and called the office of Justin Cobb, who was in court all day while this scam was going on. The circuit court office wants the public to know the truth.
Circuit Clerk Donna Jill Johnson said, "It’s a serious matter to neglect jury duty; sometimes it's by mistake. At no point in time will we ever, through the judges and circuit court and county court, ever demand payment for not showing up for jury duty immediately."
If you receive such a call, you should also report an incident like this to law enforcement.