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Tampa Police warning neighbors about criminals who pose as sales people

Tampa Police says don't open your door
Posted at 5:47 PM, Dec 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-12-12 17:59:24-05

TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Police Department is warning residents of scammers who are posing as sales people.

"Most of the time I look out my window shades to see,” explained South Tampa neighbor Laura Trent. "If we don't know them, we will ask what you need?" said Trent.

The best advice from Tampa Police when a stranger comes knocking — don't open your door.

"Not opening the door is a good thing. You should say, you mentioned you had a son, maybe call your son because we have a lot of time when elderly people are taken advantage of,” said Tampa Police Sergeant Ron Graham.

South Tampa neighbors recently reporting on an app called "Neighbors" that they've been solicited by people who say they're selling alarm systems and asking lots of personal questions.

We aren’t showing faces, because police are not sure if any of them are truly doing anything wrong but their questions raise red flags.

"They're gathering pertinent information like if you have animals, if you have kids, if you're single male or female, when you work. Alarm system? All kinds of things where they can come back and burglarize you,” said Sergeant Graham.

Sergeant Graham says tell the door knocker they're on-camera and ask them to state their business.

"If you're not sure, you can just ask us. Just call us and we'll come out, and we will vet them for you,” he said.

And if they won't leave you alone, you should definitely call police.

"If they keep continuing to pressure you to make a sale, there is a charge for that. It's a misdemeanor but they can be arrested for aggressive solicitation,” said Sergeant Graham.