Some young men claiming to be students from our local high school came to our front door recently, working steadily through the neighborhood after dark and with a well rehearsed pitch:
Buy subscriptions to magazines and the magazines will be sent to hospitals or to military personnel serving overseas. Our “salesmen” said our “donation” would be tax deductible and that they get “credits” towards a trip to London.
As you have pointed out many times over the years, none of their story was true and after some time standing at our front door we were able to show that this was nothing more than a common scam and that it was time for them to leave as we were calling the police.
The “students” of course are not from the local high school. They grew anxious and pretended not to hear us when we mentioned several names of students and faculty they should have known but they were in their early twenties to begin with and obviously not connected to our school. The money they were after was for a standard magazine subscription which we pointed out couldn’t be tax deductible and they were unable to explain how that worked when we pressed.
The “magazine company” the “students” work for had two names – both sounding really patriotic – on its sales form. It looked like they were based in Georgia. We’re still not clear how they make their money though we have heard they keep payments for subscriptions and don’t send magazines to anyone – soldiers or otherwise.
We would recommend that our neighbors read the fine print if contacted by these groups, carefully scan the documents and ID they offer, and ask a lot of questions about how they operate.
And then call the police.
Jennifer Feddimont/Pleasant Hill