ATLANTA - An Atlanta woman said she almost fell for a jury duty scam that could have cost her hundreds of dollars.
Dr. Cynthia Abbott said she was treating patients Monday when one of her employees interrupted the session. The employee told the dermatologist a man who claimed he was in law enforcement was on the phone and wanted to speak with her about missing jury duty. The caller asked Dr. Abbott to meet her at the Fulton County Jail.
“They said there was an arrest warrant for me and they wanted me to call before I left so they could track me to make sure I wasn't fleeing arrest,” Dr. Abbott said.
The woman said the Midtown doctor needed to report to the jail immediately and did not have time to go home and get her car. The woman suggested Dr. Abbott hire an Uber to get to the jail.
Once the mother of four arrived at the jail, she learned there was another problem. The scammers told her she did not have her receipt and she could not go inside the jail to get it because she might be arrested.
"Don't go up to the jail because we will have to keep you, they threatened me,” Dr. Abbott said.
The caller then puts a supervisor on the line who told Dr. Abbott to take another Uber to a Howell Mill Road address. That address ended up being a Walmart store and the entire scam started to unravel. There was another red flag; the callers would only take a pre-paid Visa.
Atlanta Police said the scammers had inside information from Fulton County documents and sounded very convincing
“Sometimes when you are threatening with an arrest, you do not think clearly. You will do anything to avoid jail,” Sgt. Warren Pickard, Atlanta Police Department spokesperson.
APD is investigating the case. Employees at Walmart told Dr. Abbott they have seen other scam victims in their store previously.