Scam alert: Lake County clerk warns residents of jury duty payment scam

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. — If you get a call demanding payment for missing jury duty in Lake County, officials say it’s a scam.

The Lake County Clerk of the Circuit Court & Comptroller’s Office is warning residents of fraudulent calls being made that claim payment must be made to avoid being arrested for missed jury duty.

>>> STREAM CHANNEL 9 EYEWITNESS NEWS LIVE <<<

Officials said callers may be identifying themselves as a representative of the sheriff’s office or other law enforcement agency, or as an employee of the clerk’s office. In some cases, the callers are asking for payment by prepaid charge or debit cards.

READ: Florida returns $25M in unclaimed property to residents; are you among them?

“Our office would never reach out by phone if you missed jury duty, and certainly would not demand any form of payment be made,” Lake County Clerk of the Circuit Court & Comptroller Gary Cooney said in a statement. “You cannot be required to pay a fine without having a hearing in front of a Judge, and a Judge ordering a fine be imposed.”

READ: Fully vaccinated and still got COVID-19? Here is what you should do next

Officials said if a resident does not report to jury duty, they will be contacted by an official letter from the Lake County Clerk’s Office. If a letter or a call is received that demands a payment be made for missed jury duty, the county advises that you hang up and report the incident to the Lake County Sheriff’s Office at (352) 343-2101 or the Florida Office of the Attorney General at 866-9NO-SCAM (866-966-7226).

If you have questions related to a jury summons or jury duty in Lake County, call the clerk’s office at 352-742-4160.

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.

Sarah Wilson

Sarah Wilson, WFTV.com

Sarah Wilson joined WFTV Channel 9 in 2018 as a digital producer after working as an award-winning newspaper reporter for nearly a decade in various communities across Central Florida.