The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office issued a warning about a scam phone call going out to Western Washington residents demanding that “money be transferred immediately.”
“These calls are a scam and they are targeting people who have no involvement in a crime,” officials said. “The King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office is not calling demanding money from people involved in any type of cases. Our office has never done that, and will not.”
If residents are charged with a crime, the way they find out is through a formal summons or a warrant – both of which must be handled in person.
Here’s the outline of one of the previous scam calls:
- The caller identifies themself as King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg and says the call recipient owes $890 in attorney fees.
- The number being faked is (206) 296-9300.
- Do not wire money to this imposter. The Prosecutor’s Office will never call and demand money.
Similar scams happened back in January 2021, and July and mid-August of 2020.
If you receive what you believe to be a bogus call from someone pretending to be from the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, here are steps you can take. This information comes from their Economic Crimes Unit, which handles felony fraud cases such as this.
- Don’t panic. This threat is not legitimate. Even if you take no action you will not be charged with a crime.
- Write down any information you can gather about the call. This may include the time you received it, what number showed on your called ID and any statements made by the fraudulent caller. While a recording of the conversation may be helpful to law enforcement, in Washington it is illegal to record someone without first telling them the conversation will be recorded. So, if you decide to record the call, give them notice, turn on the recorder, and then repeat your notice.
- Contact your local law enforcement to report the attempted fraud. The non-emergency number for the Seattle Police Department, for example, is 206-625-5011 and you also can make a report online. Save the documentation regarding the report after you’ve filed it.
- If the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office has actually charged you with a crime, separate from these scam calls, notify your attorney.
If you have questions or want to verify that a communication you received actually came from us, the phone number for the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office is 206-477-1200 and our email is [email protected].
“We are happy to help you.”