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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Police warning about door-to-door salesmen

  • Hannibal police are encouraging the public to be wary of door-to-door salesmen after a resident had money stolen by someone posing as a solicitor.
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  • Hannibal police are encouraging the public to be wary of door-to-door salesmen after a resident had money stolen by someone posing as a solicitor.
    “They talk their way in by asking to use the phone or scamming their way in one way or another,” said Lt. John Zerbonia of the HPD, adding that once in the victim’s home they will strike after distracting the individual. “When dealing with any solicitors, either door to door or over the telephone, do not allow any one in your house or give out any personal information.”
    Before dealing with any door-to-door salesmen, Zerbonia encourages people to check with the city clerk’s office to determine if the sales person has a valid itinerant license, which must be approved by the chief of police and officials at city hall. Even if the sales person has an itinerant license, police caution that’s not a 100 percent guarantee the individual is on the up and up since police can only conduct a basic criminal check for active warrants and previous cases in the department’s data system.
    According to Zerbonia, false salespeople may work alone or have a partner. He added that usually they are “younger males.”
    “I’m not saying all of them (door-to-door salesmen) are criminals. The majority are legitimate salesmen. We just need to have a little diligence,” said Zerbonia.
    No part of town is immune from the problem.
    “In the past they’ve hit all areas of town. They usually just go door to door in different areas. They hit one area one day and another area another day,” Zerbonia said.
    Now is the time of year when people need to be especially vigilant, says Zerbonia.
    “Periodically throughout the year we get them, but normally at this time when we’re getting closer to the holiday season is when we really see an increase,” he said.

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