Money Vanishes In Jury Duty Scam

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JEFFERSON CITY- A jury duty scam has successfully stolen $500 from one Cole County woman and left 12 others wondering what's next.

The Cole County Sheriff's Department began receiving calls Monday asking questions about letters being sent to homes. The letters told residents they had either missed a court date or missed a jury duty date, and instead of showing up to court they could pay a fine to Green Dot.

Green Dot is a corporation that issues prepaid Visa cards. You can get these cards online or at a retail location. Then you load money on the card by direct deposit, from a bank account, or by cash or check, and then use it just like you would any debit or credit card.

Lt. Gary Hill with the Cole County Sheriff's Department said this makes it harder to track the source. "Basically from there the money disappears," Hill said.

Currently the sheriff's department is working on tracking leads in an attempt to find out where the money is going and who is responsible for this scam. The department is working with the corporate security of Green Dot and the corporations the money was sent from.

In the meantime people affected are basically out of luck. "All we can do at that point in time is to take a report and try to get as much information out to the public and keep anyone else from falling for the scam," Hill said.

The sheriff's department says the investigation is ongoing.