Tax Scams Are Lighting Up Montana Sheriff’s Phone Lines, Not Yet as Bad as 2016
Tax scam season is upon us, but according to Ravalli County Sheriff Steve Holton, the number of scam reports so far this year have been few. This is in stark contrast to what happened in 2016.
"Last year might have been one of the worst, we only know about the ones that actually report it to us. We probably had 30 to 40 calls last year, and if we're getting 30 or 40 reported to us there's probably a substantially larger group that don't report, that just hang up," Holton said. "My biggest fear is that someone will end up releasing their personal information and maybe lose some money."
As tax scam reports continue trickling in, Holton says there is one scam that involves his department that he would like to warn the public about.
"There was someone calling, identifying themselves as a local law enforcement officer, and if they didn't pay a certain amount of money then local law enforcement would come and arrest them," Holton said. "They didn't use the name of a local officer, but they did identify as being with the Hamilton Police or the Ravalli County Sheriff's Office."
Holton says officers will never request payment to delay an arrest, to do so would be a felony in and of itself. He says any calls threatening payment or prison should be a red flag.