WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (WVEC) -- Police said they are investigating a scam that involves telephone calls and voice mails in which someone pretends to be an employee with the Williamsburg Police Department's civil division.

One tip-off that there's trouble: The police department doesn't have a civil division.

Officers said they received a number of complaints about the calls and messages.

The caller says he works with the department's civil division, then gives the person a telephone number. If the person calls that number, he/she will get a voicemail that sounds like a realistic police department voice mail message.

If the caller actually makes contact with a person, he will tell that person that he/she will be arrested for missing federal jury duty and that he/she can avoid arrest by paying a fine.

The Williamsburg Police Department released points to help people avoid becoming the victim of a scam:

  • The Williamsburg Police Department does not call or email individuals about unpaid debts or fees. If you have any doubt about the validity or identity of the caller, regardless of the number that shows up on your caller ID, call the police.
  • Do not provide the caller with any of your personal information including your address, date of birth, and social security number.
  • Obtain all the contact information you can from the caller and advise him/her you will get back in touch with them later. This should include detailed information about the debt, to whom the debt is owed, and good contact information about the organization or person who is supposed to receive the payment.
  • Do not make any payments to the caller until you have verified the call is from a legitimate source for a legitimate debt.
  • Immediately contact your local police agency and provide them all of the information you can on the call and caller.
  • Please share this information with family members and neighbors. These scammers often prey on the elderly and vulnerable.

If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact the Williamsburg Police Department at (757) 220-2331.