New Phone Scam Impersonates Commonwealth's Attorney's Office

Wednesday, December 05, 2018

The Commonwealth's Attorney's Office announced today that it has become aware of a recent phone scam in which the caller claims that they are from "ARS – a pre-legal division on behalf of the Virginia Beach Commonwealth's Attorney's Office."  The caller may leave a voice mail that states that they are trying to set up a time for someone to serve arrest warrants and that the called party needs to be available between a specific time period or someone will come to their home or place of work to arrest them.  The caller may request that you call a number in the 866 area code and try to obtain your personal or bank information.  The Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney is not affiliated with "ARS" and we do not have a "pre-legal division". 

This is similar to phone scams that impersonated the Virginia Beach Sheriff's Department and the Circuit Court Jury Administrator in recent years. Scammers often tell citizens that they can avoid arrest if they provide pre-paid debit or gift cards and read the card numbers back to the caller.  They may also say that your social security number has been compromised in an effort to obtain that information.   Never provide personal or bank account information to an unfamiliar caller.

Commonwealth's Attorney Colin Stolle encourages citizens to be skeptical of phone calls from people who claim they are law enforcement officials or officers of the court system requesting money or personal information. Scammers can spoof caller ID to make it appear that the calls are coming from legitimate government offices.  If you are concerned that you actually do owe fines or have papers that may need to be served, get the number from directory assistance and call that office or agency directly to verify the information.  At no time will our office or another government agency call you and request or demand that you pay money to avoid arrest or jury service. 

If anyone receives this type of call, please contact the Virginia Beach Police Department's Economic Crime Unit at 757-385-4101 and provide as much information as possible so that they may investigate this activity.

Please call the Office of the Commonwealth's Attorney at 757-385-4401 if additional information is desired.