Cpl. Bart Veal

Public Information Officer

903-798-3187 (office) 903-798-2368 (pager)

903-824-4199 (cell) 903-798-3023 (fax)

Texarkana Arkansas Police Badge

Re: “Scams.”

The Texarkana Arkansas Police would like to educate our community on local scams. Several Texarkana residences and specifically the elderly have been victims of scams. The cons vary from scams like the, “Paving Scam” and “Pest Control Scam.” All of which are intended to defraud the victim.

The “Paving Scam” is one of the most popular and successful scams because it deals with larger amount of money. The conman comes to your door and tells you that he was laying asphalt down at a location in the area. He says that he has some material, or asphalt left over, from the job he just finished. He offers these materials to you at a reduced rate, which he will use to pave your driveway. He then uses substandard material or asphalt that has been diluted with tar or black paint. The end product looks good but only lasts for a short time.

The “Sealing Scams” involves similar methods. The conman approaches you and tells you that he can seal your driveway or carport to either prevent cracks or stop cracks. The “sealer” he uses is usually not a sealer at all. It is usually a mixture of gasoline and tar, or paints mixed with a diluting agent. The conman offers a great price and basically paints your driveway, not sealing anything.

The “Pest Control Scam” also entails diluting the products used by the subject and again, as in the previously listed scams involves the conman approaching the intended victim. The bad guy offers to spray your house for insect control and uses substandard or completely fake materials. The conman uses white paint or even milk to deceive the victim into believing he is spraying insecticides.

The “Lightening Rod Scam” is an older scam but is still utilized today. The conman approaches the homeowner and explains that when it rains, lightening can strike their home and cause permanent damage to the electronics in the home or even burn their home down. The conman offers to install a lightening rod that will attract the lightening and protect the house.

The “Pigeon Drop Scam” is extremely common because it deals with larger sums of money. The conman approaches his victim and gives them several different scenarios in which they can make more money if you give them money. The aspects of how you will make more money varies but the scam revolves around the victim giving them money, which they ultimately do not return.

All of these scams have occurred in Texarkana at one time or another. The important thing to remember about these scams is that they all involved the criminal approaching the consumer.

On some occasions the victims have let the conman or someone with them in their home and conman stolen property or stolen their identity.

The Texarkana Arkansas Police Department offers these tips to help you not become a victim of a scam.

Be wary of anyone approaching you at home. Very few businesses use this practice. Check to see if they have magnetic signs on their vehicle. Look at the condition of their vehicles and equipment, if it looks unused, it probable is. Ask for business addresses or cards and references. Ask to see their contractor’s license and tax numbers. Research the business they purport to be with.

Remember, “If the offer sounds to good to be true it probable is”.