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Red light citation scam

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Updated: 12/30/2013 11:55 pm
GREEN COVE SPRINGS Fla.-- That local number you think is the Sheriff's Office calling to protect you, could really be a scammer calling to steal from you.

A local victim who wanted to keep his identity private tells Action News a man called him Sunday claiming to be a Lt. with the Clay County Sheriff's Office. 

He demanded payment for an overdue red light camera traffic citation, one the victim claims he never got in the mail. 

"The guy was very convincing," the victim says.

He says the caller threatened to arrest him if he didn't pay the ticket.

"He sounded just like a like a big cop was coming up here to put the handcuffs on," he said.

Fearing he'd be arrested, this local man tells Action News he gave the caller his credit card number. Minutes after he hung up, he realized something wasn't right. One call to the real Clay County Sheriff's Department confirmed he'd been scammed.

"We're not going to call you on the phone and tell you you've been issued a citation," said Detective Brian Curry with the Clay County Sheriff's Office. 

Curry is investigating a number of local cases in Green Cove Springs. Det. Curry says if you fell for this crook's story, call your bank immediately and cancel your card. 

"If he sees that these people are going to continue to be giving him money he's going to continue to call he can just be looking in a phone book or online and getting phone numbers for residents in Clay County," he said.

This local victim was able to cancel his debit card before the scammer could use it. He hopes what happened to him won't happen to any of his Clay County neighbors. 

Investigators say they worry other people may have been scammed and not even know it. They're working to trace the scammer's number to find a suspect. 

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