Sep 112003
Authors: Taylour Nelson

Magazine solicitors sometimes go door to door at the residence halls in attempts to sell magazine subscriptions. Recently, some of the solicitors have been attempting to steal money from the residents.

On Aug. 26, residents in Parmelee Hall filed a police report with the CSU Police Department concerning a solicitor in their hall selling fraudulent magazine subscriptions, said Capt. Bob Chaffee.

The man represented himself as a member of the CSU baseball team who was collecting money for the speech department, Chaffee said. But the man had no affiliation with CSU and did not belong to a subscription company.

CSUPD was not able to identify the man because he exited the building before they responded.

Solicitors target the residence halls because of the high density of students in such a small area, said Mary Ellen Sinnwell, director of Residence Life.

“It’s a very convenient place to find a variety of students with credit cards,” she said.

Two men claiming to be broadcast students approached Alexa Mossbrook, a freshman open option major, in her room in Parmelee Hall during her first week of school. She was told they were in a competition and would receive points for each subscription they sold.

“They said if I bought the magazines and then cancelled it, they would still get the points,” she said.

As one of the men gave her the form, which told her when she could cancel the subscription, the other man distracted her with questions and then proceeded to ask her out, an offer she declined.

Mossbrook bought two subscriptions and wrote the men a check for $110.

She was told she had a three-day period to cancel her subscription, but because they approached her on a Friday, she was not able to cancel the subscription on that Sunday. She is currently trying to cancel her subscriptions and check.

According to the 2003-2004 Residence Hall Handbook, “Door-to-door solicitation, distributing and advertising is prohibited” in any of the residence halls.

These types of soliciting violations in the residence halls occur a few times a year, Chaffee said.

Solicitors approached Jerod Cronquist, a junior sports medicine major, when he lived in the residence halls, but he did not buy a subscription.

“I know they are scam artists. If you want a certain magazine, get it from the company,” he said.

Tuesday night a man aggressively tried to enter a female resident’s room in Ellis Hall claiming he needed to complete a subscription sale.

“She called CSUPD and they responded. She handled it very well,” Chaffee said.

Sinnwell advises students to contact their resident assistant, the front desk of their residence hall or CSUPD if they see anyone who does not belong in their hall.

“In this day in age, people are more and more creative about committing crimes,” Chaffee said. “Students should not allow anyone into the room unless they know the person.”

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