ANGELINA COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - A Lufkin man is sharing his story of being victimized by a person posing as an Angelina County Sheriff's Office deputy and asking for money.
"A man called me on the phone, told me he was with the Angelina County Sheriff's Department and asked me who Judge Clyde Herrington was. (I) told him yes, said I missed a jury summons on the 5th," said Mark Oliver, a co-owner of Oliver Plumbing.
Oliver said the caller was very convincing.
"You know it's not hard to believe that you can miss a jury summons. Anybody could miss the jury summons, and everybody gets 'em. So it wasn't hard to believe that I'd missed on," Oliver said.
The caller, who posed as a deputy was able to give names and badge numbers, and then asked Oliver for a prepaid money card to pay a fine over the phone because he missed his summons. Oliver said the man even sounded like he had an East Texas accent.
"He just knew a lot. He either did a lot of research, or he's been here before. He knows Angelina County," Oliver said.
It's what followed the call that left Oliver out of $750 dollars. He said its hard to believe he fell for the trap so easily.
"It really made me mad at first, you know," Oliver said. "And it's not a comfortable feeling to know that somebody got over to you that way."
Captain Alton Lenderman with the sheriff's office said their department will never call people and take credit card numbers over the phone.
"I think one of the important things you need to remember is that this one particular one, they use names that you're familiar with," Lenderman said.
As for Oliver, he said he's learned one very expensive lesson.
"I won't be sending no more money over the phone," Oliver said.
Sheriff's office said anytime there is even a slight possibility of doubt, hang up and call the phone number associated with the office or agency to verify the source.