Client called me today to check on the legitimacy of a call she received. The caller claimed that a bench warrant had been issued for her arrest for an unpaid speeding ticket. The caller directed her to make a cash payment through a money gram or some sort of green cash payment system through Walmart. The caller then directed her to call back and ask for Sgt. Cunningham, read him the numbers on the back of the payment bill so that he could get rid of the bench warrant immediately. The caller also used scare tactics to try and have her pay with threats that she could be arrested at any time.
The number she was called from and directed to return the call to was 1-855-455-3186. I called on her behalf and was connected with a voicemail instructing all callers to call from the number they were called on about the ticket. I tried with a blocked number then I actually had my client bring me her phone and called from her phone. We were never able to get a person on the phone after the initial call but my client was instructed to call again at a specified time later that day. [update] Sgt. Cunningham called back from number 513-442-3408 and when questioned further got frustrated and hung up.
During the conversation with my client the person on the other end of the phone had limited information about my client and could not provide specific information regarding the ticket, the officer, etc. This call was a fraudulent call. If you know of anyone that receives a call like this, tell them to ignore it. First and foremost, you are never called and told a bench warrant is being issued on you. Secondly, payment on tickets are handled at court houses/municipal buildings. Third, most clerks (those that handle these type of cases) will have specific information about the ticket including the ticket number, the officer and other information on the ticket.
If you feel you may be the target of a fraudulent situation, ask questions and ask more questions. If you are not satisfied with the answers or still feel it is a fraudulent situation, contact an attorney to help you out. You will never get in trouble for seeking the assistance of an attorney.
This post was with the express permission of my client to alert others that may be the target of this fraudulent behavior.