Tampa woman warns neighbors of man going door to door claiming to be with Big Brothers Big Sisters

Posted at 6:20 PM, May 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-18 18:20:02-04

TAMPA — A Tampa woman turned to Nextdoor to warn her neighbors about a man pretending to be associated with Big Brothers Big Sisters.

The incident happened in the Parkland Estates neighborhood yesterday around 7:15 p.m. Anneliese Meier said she immediately knew it was not true and asked more questions.

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"If you dig deeper and ask some probing questions, you find out they can't back up any statements," Meier said.

Meier shared the conversation she had with the stranger online because she wanted to warn other neighbors.

"He was asking for money either to that entity or just give to the bigger entity, but we didn't get into what the bigger entity was," Meier said.

The President and CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay, Stephen Koch, said he is concerned about the incident because someone is using the name of the nonprofit charity.

"Never going door to door doing cold calls, asking for money like that...that's not how we raise our funds," Koch said.

Koch said he wants it shared with other people so it does not happen to anyone else.

"No absolutely not, you know, just the way you described it, that’s scary and you know, we would not …we would not have people doing that sort of thing at all," Koch said.

Koch said anyone can call them to verify whether a person is affiliated with them.

“It concerns me greatly because, you know, people are trying to do a good thing in helping a charity or cause and they’re just being duped," Koch said.

The Tampa Police Department said they received eight calls about a suspicious person in the area this month, but never mentioned anything about Big Brothers Big Sisters.