AKRON, Ohio (WJW) — Summit County residents are being warned about a scam that’s been around for years but has once again targeted the community.

Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh on Tuesday announced the alert after a resident informed the office of a suspicious phone call they received.

“A local resident recently informed our office that they got a phone call saying a warrant had been issued for their arrest because they missed jury duty,” Walsh said. “I want to remind everyone that a warrant is never issued for missing jury duty and you will not be forced to pay a fine with a gift card. This is a scam.”

The jury duty scam works similar to other phone scams where the caller urges you to get rid of the warrant by paying a fine with a gift card. The prosecutor’s office reminds residents that they cannot pay fines or outstanding bills with store gift cards. Scammers are hoping they can catch unsuspecting victims off guard with the threat of an arrest.

“We’ve seen this scam pop up from time to time,” Walsh said. “I always urge people to not answer calls from unfamiliar phone numbers.”

If you do happen to answer a call from an unfamiliar phone number, the prosecutor’s office offers the following tips:

  1. Do not give out personal confidential information, including your Social Security or credit card
    numbers to anyone you suspect of trying to commit fraud against you.
  2. If you should get such a call and wonder if it is true, you can double check the legitimacy of the
    call by looking up the court number yourself and placing your own call to the courts.
  3. Be vigilant about any calls asking for personal information. There are many variants of scams,
    and the jury-duty call is just one.

To check the legitimacy of the call, click here or call 330-643-2211.