Sheriff warns about phone scam from fake “Captain Guilford”

Linn County Sheriff Jim Yon is warning about a scam technique that, he says, is currently on a rise in Linn County.

Citizens have been receiving telephone calls from a male who identifies himself as “Captain Guilford.”

The male tells recipients that they have an outstanding warrant and because they did not show up for court, they now have a federal subpoena. The caller then asks the recipient to get a pre-paid money card and pay the fine over the telephone. The phone number is often a fake, as these phone numbers are forwarded through fake phone apps. 

Yon said his office has received two calls Tuesday, Oct. 16, regarding this scam.

This is extremely alarming to our office, as we do have a Captain Guilford employed at the Linn County Sheriff’s Office,” Yon said. “Often, names are pulled from public websites and used in these types of scams. In 2015, another captain from our office was used in these types of scams.

We would like to remind our citizens that law enforcement will never ask for money over the phone or electronically. These are well-known scams. Please do not give out any personal information to someone you do not know.  This includes your account numbers, Social Security number, names, addresses and date of birth.”

Yon said that if anyone has fallen victim to one of these scams and has been defrauded money or personal information, they should your local law enforcement agency and report it immediately. Those who suspect a scam and have not been defrauded should recommend reporting the activity directly to the United States Department of Justice at www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/contact/report-fraud.html, he said.