HOLMES COUNTY - Holmes County Sheriff John Tate is warning the public of a scam in which callers are demanding residents pay non-existent bonds, threatening arrest as a consequence of not doing so.

In this latest version of the law enforcement scam, the caller is claiming to be with the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office, telling intended victims there is an outstanding warrant for their arrest and stating if they pay the “bond” that has already been set, they will not be picked up.

In one incident reported earlier this week, a scammer identified himself as “Lieutenant Sellers with the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office” and instructed his intended victim to obtain prepaid Visa gift cards and provide him with the cards’ information as a method of payment.

Be advised the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office will never call anyone to tell them they have a warrant or to solicit money in any way. Never give anyone claiming to be with the Sheriff’s Office money over the phone, even if the caller uses a name you recognize.

Bonds are actually not set prior to a subject’s arrest; instead, bonds are set by a judge during a defendant’s first appearance proceeding. Warrants can be verified by calling the Holmes County Communications Center at 850- 547-3681 (Option 1).