From the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office:

The Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office has received several reports of another phone scam targeting local residents.

As part of the scam, the caller claims to be from a police department or sheriff’s office. The scammer tells the resident that their loved one is in jail and needs their help to post bail. The scammer then instructs the resident to purchase pre-paid cards or gift cards, then pass along the code located on the back of the card to the scammer.

In one case, the scammer asked the resident to purchase gift cards from Home Depot.

We would like to remind the public that law enforcement will never call you for bail money and will never ask you to pay via pre-paid cards or gift cards.

Always verify information before providing anyone with your personal information over the phone.

In this case, contact your loved one that the scammer mentioned. If they don’t answer, independently obtain a phone number for the correctional facility mentioned. Do not use the number the scammer provides. Then contact the facility directly to check if your loved one is in custody.

Report phone scams to your local law enforcement and to the Federal Trade Commission at