Alleged Sports Team Scammer Still At-Large
No word available on scammer who solicited money for a sports team earlier this month.
No further reports have been heard in Chevy Chase Village about an alleged scammer soliciting money for a sports team, Chevy Chase Village Police Chief John Fitzgerald told Patch on Thursday.
Earlier this month, Chevy Chase Village police reported on the village website that "[a] slender Caucasian male in his [mid-20s] has solicited homes in [Chevy Chase] Village and in [Washington,] DC for a soccer team by the name of the 'DC Strikers'. He has introduced himself as 'Chris Scholz'. The Chevy Chase Village Police Department believes this is a scam."
A poster on the Georgetown neighborhood listserv reported a similar incident:
"Today I was approached by a young man going door to door raising money for a traveling soccer team to pay for their trip to the UK. He said they were called the Strikers," the Georgetown neighbor wrote.
The Northwest Current reported on the story this past week:
"[In] recent incidents in Chevy Chase, Georgetown and the Palisades, residents who acquiesced to a young man purportedly requesting donations for youth soccer—with checks to be made out to 'MFA'—have later received receipts for magazine subscriptions they never requested. Salespeople for MFA, the Georgia-based Marquis Fulfillment Agency, have faced dozens of nearly identical complaints throughout the country in which people who thought they were donating to youth programs realized they'd instead bought subscriptions," The Current reported on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012 (volume XLV, No. 35, pages 1 and 16).
The Marquis Fulfillment Agency did not respond to messages from The Current, the newspaper added.
A contributor to the Chevy Chase, DC, listserv had been approached by the alleged scammer, and—suspicious of the man's "very cagey responses"—he alerted the Washington, DC, police about him, Fitzgerald explained.
The Georgetown listserv poster also was suspicious: "The charity angle also sounded fishy - money would buy books for a children's hospital and then somehow kick back a percentage to pay for their trip."
Fitzgerald advised residents who are approached by people soliciting money for nonprofit organizations that they should not make any decisions on the spot. Ask for take-away literature, do independent research on the organization and think it over first, Fitzgerald said.
"I think that this general area is fairly affluent, and many of the folks are benevolent, and I think that those two things combined can [lead to] ... improvident decisions at the front door step," he added.
To verify that a solicitor is legitimate, call the county police, or—if you are a resident of Chevy Chase Village—call the village police. All solicitors in Montgomery County must be registered with the county, and all solicitors in Chevy Chase Village must be registered with the village, the village website added.
The Second District Police can be reached at (202) 715-7300. In case of emergency, however, call 911.