The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana has received reports from victims who have been contacted by scammers claiming to be with federal or state law enforcement requesting that the victims pay fines allegedly ordered by Chief Judge Tanya Walton Pratt for failure to appear for jury service.
This is a scam. A court will never call someone and demand a payment. If you receive such a call, hang up immediately. Residents of the Southern District of Indiana who believe they have been the victim of such a scam may report the incident to the Federal Trade Commission, at: https://reportfraud.ftc.gov/#/.
Here is are steps you can take if you are contacted by a scammer:
- Do not divulge personal information or financial information to unknown callers, including those who claim to work for a government agency.
- A court will never ask for a credit/debit card number, gift card number, wire transfers, or bank routing numbers over the phone or by email for any purpose.
- If a someone has been summonsed for jury service and has failed to appear in the Southern District of Indiana, the court would first send a letter. A fine would never be imposed until after, at minimum, the person who did not appear for jury service appeared in court and was given an opportunity to explain their failure to appear directly to a judge.
- Scams may be reported to the Federal Trade Commission. (You can remain anonymous when you report.)