Suspicious People Going Door-to-Door in Concord Neighborhoods

April 4, 2012 20:49 pm · 116 comments

We’ve had several reports of suspicious individuals going door-to-door in two different Concord neighborhoods tonight, which are both very close to eachother.

Here’s the first email we received….

I am writing in to tell you that tonight around 7:30, a younger man, maybe 17-early twenties knocked on our door very obnoxiously. My sister answered and he asked if our parents were home, and our dad was right there and took over.

The guy claimed that he was here for a “school project” and then immediately changed the story and said that he was a “new neighbor. My dad asked him what street he lived on and he said he couldn’t give out that information. That was a dead ringer that something was wrong right there.

What “new neighbor” from “a few courts over” would come knocking on doors to not say where he lived? My dad called the police and they pretty much dismissed it and said that if they were asked what street they lived on that they wouldn’t say either. We were FLOORED to hear this. If you’re going to come over and introduce yourself then you should be willing to say where you live, otherwise there’s no point.

After reading about a similar story on Claycord, we are extremely worried especially with all of the local break-ins. We live in the Limeridge area near Treat and Cowell towards Ygnacio. If you could please post a warning about this, I would appreciate it since the police don’t seem to be worried about this. The guy was white, with blond hair, according to my dad.

And here’s the second email….

Just wanted to let you know that a suspicious group of people are knocking on every door in Canterbury Village. It’s after 8:00pm and they are aggressively knocking on doors like they are trying to break them down.

When I answered my door the guy seemed startled and said , “oh sorry wrong house” and quickly walked off.

I called the PD and they said I was the third caller reporting the same thing from our neighborhood and that a couple of PD were out cruising around looking for these guys.

Just thought you should know.

And here’s the third email….

Just wanted to let everyone know about some scammers going around pretending to sell magizines. We called the cops. The people, a short white girl and a short black guy got into a car with Arizona licence plates.

Hope they catch them because it seems to be a problem in this area.

Thanks to everybody for the emails regarding these people.

1 Canterbury Village Resident April 4, 2012 at 8:56 PM

We also had someone knock obnoxiously on our front door at about 8:39pm tonight. It was a short, early 20s black man. He rang the doorbell repeatedly and then banged on the door. We thought there might be an emergency. My husband answered the door and asked him if he was a neighbor with an emergency. The person said no and my husband closed the door on him.

Our hunches say: very suspicious.

2 lisa April 4, 2012 at 8:59 PM

I’m fed up w/ it — if I see any of these people I’m immediately calling the police.

3 memory lane April 4, 2012 at 9:02 PM

thank god I have a dog.
I do not answer my door to strangers.

4 Anon April 4, 2012 at 9:02 PM

We had some guys today over off of Port Chicago said they were selling some sort of “green” cleaning product. VERY rude and wouldnt’ take no for an answer, I finally had my husband take over and they left.

5 Drop the Dime April 4, 2012 at 9:02 PM

Door to door sales person arrested.
http://www.ktvu.com/news/news/crime-law/san-jose-solicitor-arrested-after-seen-entering-ba/nMG6S/

Have CCTV system, cameras around house and drive way. Have had maybe 2 door to door sales people in 5 years. Usually they see cameras, turn around and just keep on walking.

6 ABAGal April 4, 2012 at 9:09 PM

I cannot believe the dispatchers @ CPD! They work for us.
Arm yourselves, folks… ‘ cause the PD won’t come to your rescue.

7 Heather April 4, 2012 at 9:11 PM

We live in Canterbury Village and have had no knocks tonight. Although yesterday evening around 6:30 a young lady walked up to my door and when I saw here through the window I said it was not a good time. I was feeding my son dinner. She turned around and left. We get SO MANY solicitors.. it is really bothersome. Sometimes I feel like closing up my blinds as soon as we get home!

8 Kendra April 4, 2012 at 9:17 PM

How scary. I hate knowing that these people are out there. Go back to whatever city you came from.

9 DogLover April 4, 2012 at 9:22 PM

I had a similar experience a few weeks back except it was at 12:30 p.m. Who goes door to door to try to sell when people are not usually home? I looked at the guy through our window and said we didn’t need anything (white guy, plaid shirt, jeans, 18-22 looking, 6 ft). I thought about it as he made his way on our street with several folks not home. He said he was selling subscriptions (with nothing in hand). I took his picture with my cell phone, asked him for his permit, and he started calling me all the names he thought would scare me off. Cell phone in hand, I called the police. He high tailed it out of our street.

10 DogLover April 4, 2012 at 9:24 PM

Oh, he also said something about being from a street close to ours. I asked him if he lived on that street, but he said a relative lived there.

11 Turtle Creek Resident April 4, 2012 at 9:25 PM

I live in turtle creek and the same incident happened to me he was trying to look around our home also and tried to make sexual jokes.

12 NutCreek Frontier April 4, 2012 at 9:25 PM

Our neighborhood too at Treat and Oak Grove. The driver was a Middle Eastern guy in a small Mercedez with Arizona plates. Total scam artist, trying to find out what houses were vacant in our neighborhood.

13 anonymous April 4, 2012 at 9:30 PM

We had the shorter guy knock on our door last night at dinner time and the girl came back tonight. I sure hope this gets looked into. We are in the Canterbury Village area. Very shady.

14 anonanonagain April 4, 2012 at 9:34 PM

This just happened to me yesterday. I live in one of the fore-mentioned neighborhoods and was in the bathroom when I heard loud knocking on my front door. I couldn’t make it to the door in time for obvious reasons, and when I looked outside, a young man with a black and white checkered shirt and baggy pants was walking away, holding a clip board and talking to someone on a cell phone. (One of those vans that drops delinquent kids trying to get their life back on track kinda vans??) Anyway, it looked suspicious to me and I’m glad that I was too “busy” to get the door…….

15 Idea April 4, 2012 at 9:34 PM

If you have a smart phone, call up the camera feature then answer the door and take their picture.

16 Iola April 4, 2012 at 9:36 PM

These are disturbing stories and defiantly not the first I’ve read on here. But people DON’T OPEN YOUR DOOR to people you don’t know. Whatever they want it’s just not that important to risk your life/ household security. Especially after dark don’t do it, they could force their way in, have weapons or just be casing ( which is what it sounds like). I know it sounds cold that we have to live like this, can’t be trusting or friendly, but it’s just not worth it. Thanks to all those for reporting. Stay safe.

17 Mad Mom April 4, 2012 at 9:39 PM

We were offered a free copy of the CC Times around 6:30. Real aggressive knock. White guy with dark hair. Going door to door.

18 Girl selling magazines came to my house April 4, 2012 at 9:51 PM

I asked her if she had a permit from the city. She said, yea. I said, can I see it? She said, I don’t have it with me. I said, that’s funny you would go door to door and not carry your permit to do so. She went away.

She started the whole thing saying she was trying to raise money for college…Honey, if you don’t know enough to find out about soliciting laws, you are not smart enough for college. It must be a scam…goodbye.

19 P Grant April 4, 2012 at 9:52 PM

I had a young man (early 20’s) knock on the door if my Clayton home at 6pm on March 26th. He claimed he was a neighbor from a few blocks away and he needed my help with a school project. I told him I was busy and I could not help him. To which he replied “do you want me to come back later?” I told him “No.” He made a snide comment about me being rude and he walked off in a huff. I called Clayton PD and reported the incident.

20 ATKOH April 4, 2012 at 9:52 PM

Yesterday, around noon there was a knock on our front door I peeked thru my kitchen window and saw a young woman with some papers in her hand, but her head was turned away toward the street so she did not see me looking. Since I did not recognize her I did not open the door then she proceeds to knock a couple more times then finally left. Our house is off Oak Grove road between Monument and Treat Blvd.

21 wc resident April 4, 2012 at 10:05 PM

i live in downtown wc area by bart and had two african american women come to my door selling magazines. about 2 weeks ago i had a mexican man about 23-26 come knockin on my door asking me for a magazine ssubscription. my neighbor signed up but im still a little sketched out…

22 wc resident April 4, 2012 at 10:07 PM

ps. i just wanna be aware but dont really know… what are these scammers looking for exactly?

23 Barmaster April 4, 2012 at 10:08 PM

“Our neighborhood too at Treat and Oak Grove. The driver was a Middle Eastern guy in a small Mercedez with Arizona plates. Total scam artist, trying to find out what houses were vacant in our neighborhood.”

Saw this guy on my walk with the dogs tonight, parked outside a vacant house across from the “horse and the goat”, near the entrance to lime ridge open space.

24 Concord Mike April 4, 2012 at 10:19 PM

We had an attempted break in two weeks ago Friday… during the day. We were only gone for a couple of hours – whoever made the attempt jumped our fence and tried to use a prybar. I had reinforced the rear doors so they were not successful.

The police came out and took the report, and said the same MO was used on another house in Turtle Creek or Crossings and they hit pay dirt with that one – a bunch of jewelry and some guitars were stolen.

No doubt they rang the door bell first to determine we were not home. Going forward all these solicitors (at least any over the age of 12) will get the third degree from me. I like the idea of taking a picture of them.

25 John April 4, 2012 at 10:20 PM

typical CPD response. no money in it for them so why would they bother?

26 anon April 4, 2012 at 10:21 PM

who sells good CCTV systems for homeowners at a reasonable price? I would definitely be interested. I would like to be able to watch my house from work or pay a service to do it for me. ADT seems to just have alarms.

27 Nom de Plume April 4, 2012 at 10:22 PM

Glad to see people are being more vigilant and reporting these people. Do not let them in your house. Hard to believe someone in San Jose let a person use their bathroom. Keep making sure get they message they are not wanted.

28 Lee White April 4, 2012 at 10:37 PM

This is the natural result when you elect idiots such as Laura Hoffmeister, Ron Leone, and that Jeezus Jumper (whatever his name is) to the city council. Then there’s poor old — emphasis on OLD — Dan Helix. We have a ticket-fixing buffoon for a police chief with some thug who came from Oakland PD as a captain. The city manager, who was worthless as the tits on a boar hog, went to Vallejo and the city attorney, whose primary duty seemed to be helping city employees avoid summonses and subpoenas, bolted for Albany, but we’re still paying him. Do y’all really expect protection from such people?

Here’s what to do if someone you don’t know knocks on your door: DON’T ANSWER. If they’re persistent, I usually unload a string of profanity that would embarrass Bobby Knight. That has worked for me 100 percent of the time — especially with the Mormons. Then again, I’m a pretty stout guy with a low tolerance for BS.

Sorry, folks, but you have to protect yourselves. The government isn’t going to do it for you. It should be abundantly clear to one and all that those in charge really aren’t and those who aren’t just don’t care as long as they get paid and receive their enormous pensions.

29 Kimberly April 4, 2012 at 10:39 PM

I think everyone should start opening their doors holding a shotgun and say what #@$% you want?……

30 Zoom-Zoom April 4, 2012 at 10:44 PM

I’m glad I have a gate in front of my house including a “No Soliciting” sign on it. These dirtbags don’t even come within 25 feet of my front door.

If they ring the door bell anyway, I peep through the curtains to verify it is a solicitor and never buzz them in.

31 Mimi (original) April 4, 2012 at 10:53 PM

OMG! We’re a buncha ladies living here and want NO visitors like these! Cars in the driveway or not, there’s usually someone home so Just Go Away!

32 Buffalo Bill Canterbury Village April 4, 2012 at 10:53 PM

Not to worry, my trap-door got them. It puts the lotion in the basket or it gets the hose!

33 BJR April 4, 2012 at 10:58 PM

I agree with Kimberly!!

34 Concernicus April 4, 2012 at 11:11 PM

@27: i cant believe its come to the point where a person cant just ask for help to not piss themselves on a long walk home. there have been times when i needed to stop and knock to avoid pissing myself, before. thank god those people let me in, though, or i wouldve had to go the rest of the way home…stinky and ashamed. stuff like this makes me grateful that they didnt treat me like a burglar for simply needing to use a toilet for a moment.
(of course i never made a HABIT of it, but we’ve all had times where we thought we were good but then it turns out we werent as set as we thought.)

this whole article makes me happy to have a locked gate. at least then, only the ones that slip past when my less intelligent neighbors let them through, get in.

35 Mr. Bassman April 4, 2012 at 11:12 PM

Buy a “no soliciting” sign, affix it near your front door in plain view of anyone coming up to your door. Anyone who still persist in knocking on your door “selling” something is at that point probably up to no good, and you should treat them as you would any other criminal, in my opinion.

36 Still loves Concord April 4, 2012 at 11:13 PM

Same things happened in my neighborhood last month, but the brazen kid at the door came after my home invasion. The police did respond to my reporting him & they caught him. Never heard what action, if any, was taken.
EVERYONE who has a back door needs a deadbolt, they ripped off my back doorknob (on door into my garage) but couldn’t open the door, even using a crowbar, because of the deadbolt. All sliding doors need to be secured so they can’t be lifted off. If you have a dogdoor in or near a sliding door you need to have a pole bracing the door as they opened my door after removing the dogdoor cover.
The police recommend closing your blinds at night & leaving on outdoor lights, especially in the backyard where all SEVEN home invasions in my neighborhood were accessed. But most occured here during the day, some shortly after people left home, some while people were home, one came home to hear their alarm going off and the person still in their home. Two were witnessed jumping over the back fence in retreat. One person had a big dog at home & was still victimized. I wonder if someone was at the front door distracting the dog while another broke in the back?
Good Luck to those who’s neighborhoods have yet to be hit as it seems to be VERY common. I read this week where all the same tactics were used on several folks in Hercules, came in through forced back doors.

37 Gladys Kravitz April 4, 2012 at 11:15 PM

We had a woman with at least 3 young kids with her show up selling cookies, candy bars and chips.

38 Ley N. Lowe April 4, 2012 at 11:41 PM

Happened to us last night in Turtle Creek. They’re here atleast once a month. Just be sure that you’re nice if they’re wearing a hoodie…

39 Samson April 5, 2012 at 12:12 AM

Lee son’t know what these people have to do with the city council. However I do agree just don’t open your door.

40 AC April 5, 2012 at 12:56 AM

The thing is, I think it may be better to answer your door to shoo them off-if you don’t answer they may assume that you’re not home. In a sense I feel its better to let them know that you see them (the picture taking idea is great) and that you are aware of what is going on around your neighborhood. I’d really like to get a video surveillance system or something. Definitely locking up/hiding any valuables, even in the daytime, you can’t be sure, and obviously, more than one group of people are out casing all of these homes.

41 Screwy Louie April 5, 2012 at 12:59 AM

Anon @26
I use a D-Link router and D-link Camera(s) (available at Fry’s) hooked
up thru a 10+ year old home computer using Xfinity by Comcast. After the initial equipment is purchased, no other fees are required.
You can view the cameras from any computer or smart phone at mydlink.com. It’s an easy & simple set up. works great.

42 CONCORD RES! April 5, 2012 at 3:00 AM

Research this…. 3901 Clayton rd… April 4th around 10am 2012 … elderly woman leaves 1 hour maybe 1 1/2 hour came back to empty condo, flat screen bolted to wall …. were talking everything….. that quick nobody noticed anything, im her neighbor and Im so fed up with this stuff going on in the area lately.. mayor please look this up it should be public record. been waiting to read this on here but i wanted say something since i haven’t heard anything yet … stay frosty…. any more info like this would be good to share..
ty

43 c April 5, 2012 at 3:09 AM

Few weeks ago one of them came up to my door while my wife was outside smoking. he said he was from the neighbor hood and was going around meeting neighbors. I was at the computer when I heard this and knew that he was lying. so I picked up one of my guns and walked to the door. When he saw me in the door with a Mac 11 in my hand he got scared and said he was just selling magazines. I asked if he was selling any gun magazines and he said no. So i said “OK bye”. He left quick.

44 CONCORD RES! April 5, 2012 at 3:23 AM

well said #29 8-)

45 Estelle April 5, 2012 at 5:12 AM

I live off Mohr Ln in Concord. Last night about 7pm a woman came to my door and said she just moved into the neighborhood. She was selling Sunday subsciptions to people for $40 for three months. She was doing it for two kids who were mentally challenged. I said no. Beware these people are using childeren as an excuse to get to your pocket books as well as your house.

46 TinFoiler April 5, 2012 at 6:47 AM

15 posts before common sense prevails, Really?
Pictures are FREE, I suggest you have camera / phone/ handycam in hand and get a nice little video for all of us to view on youtube.
Criminals HATE having their picture taken.

47 Angie April 5, 2012 at 7:10 AM

They came to our door too. We live in Cantrubury Village. After turning away the female who gave the lame ” if I sell enough magazines, I will win a trip to London ” speech she went on our street corner and was yelling nonsense. She also threatened to attack our neighbor. I confronted her and told her her I knew her and her friends were up to no good and I want them out of my neighborhood and that I am calling the police. She told me ” go ahead! ” I called the police and while I was out front keeping an eye on this girl who was still yelling random things at our street cornerher ride pulled up and she jumped in. it was a red ford s.u.v. with Arizona plates. These kids are absolutely scammers, and I they drastcially underestimated the people in the City of Concord! I wanted to get a no soliciting sign on my door, but I think I won’t so I can see who is trying to take advantage of and steal from my neighbors.

48 everyone calling cops each time should get response April 5, 2012 at 7:10 AM

If the cops get lots of calls from people reporting this, they should respond. If they think it’s only 2 or 3 people complaining, they may not realize it’s a big deal, but if everyone calls when it happens and they get lots of calls about it, I bet they’ll want to check it out.

49 Z's Mom April 5, 2012 at 7:28 AM

Wow, thanks for the warning. Sounds very suspicious to me. Hopefully our dog will scare the crap out of them if they come to my door, if not my 45 will!

50 Concord Mom April 5, 2012 at 7:31 AM

I pulled up to my house in St. Francis Park yesterday around 3pm to find a guy standing on my front porch. He said he was looking for donations to help a group of people get back on their feet and on the right path, then he said something about selling magazines. When I told him I am currently laid off and can’t help him, he commented on the car I am driving like I should have no problem helping him.
I was a little nervous as I went into my house until I realized my adult son was inside with our 2 large dogs.
We left a short time later and I noticed a small white car with a girl driving, making a u turn at our court. Didn’t see the license plate, but it was not a familiar car from our neighborhood.
Too bad Concord PD feels the need to wait until something bad happens before taking action.

51 Barbara April 5, 2012 at 7:38 AM

Interesting … I’ve suggested this before as an alternative to ASSIST police re: these individuals. Keep a digital camera nearby; if you don’t recognize the person, “Just-a-minute” them, turn off the flash, put the lens to the peep-hole, enlarge the photo 3X, and make it a Kodak moment. (Peephole cameras are even sold for this purpose; but digitals can be sufficient.).

THEN ask what they want. If it’s suspicious, contact the cops and provide them with the photo. Otherwise, the police have nothing to work with.

52 Cruella April 5, 2012 at 7:46 AM

They’re baaaaack. These sounds like the same perps/stories that were around the Sun Terrace neighborhood a few weeks ago. Dreadlocked youngster who looked about 17, saggy pants, knocked and said he was a “new neighbor.” One poster asked what they wanted. First, they want to see if you’re home. Second, they want a peek at your home to see if they want to come back. Camera is a great idea. Shotgun even better.

53 just curous April 5, 2012 at 7:51 AM

is the poster Lee White the same Lee White that is a registered sex offender in concord?

54 Please Post April 5, 2012 at 8:05 AM

Please post their location today. They will be making the rounds again I’m sure. I’ll be making deliveries today and would be happy to take photos of this crew.

55 Anon April 5, 2012 at 8:24 AM

Open the door, drag them into your house and kill them. Trespassing and using self defense. Done!

56 I agree with Kimberly as well April 5, 2012 at 8:28 AM

a 12 gauge can deter a lot of people, so can any other weapon.

I live in Holbrook Heights and had an odd fellow come to the door and tell me his father had sent him over to talk to me and get my help with a school project. I did not know this guy, he was doing a bad job of trying to act young. I told him to come back later, he never did of course. Also had the guy peddling the solvent who was persistent but he did leave after a firm “no thank you”

The police are incredibly busy and cannot respond to every call, specially calls that are not immediately life threatening. Its always easy to make comments about the police in hindsight. These people are busy on calls all the time.

I believe its best to be able to take care of yourself. The police just cannot be everywhere. A CCTV is a great idea but it only is only good after the fact. Dogs, guns, pepper spay, baseball bats, profanity, a strong front door or anything that works. I always ask for a license, few have that.

Preparation is the best defense. The house does not have to be a prison, but appropriate precautions will do a lot to keep keep us safe.

Door to door sales is a dead business, except for girl scouts and similar truly neighborhood activities, there is no reason for people to sell door to door.

57 I'm Your Huckleberry April 5, 2012 at 8:54 AM

I think it’s time to make any type of door-to-door soliciting illegal – period.

58 DoReMi April 5, 2012 at 9:03 AM

Add this to the list.

Young man around 18-22 selling magazines for childrens hospital in Oakland. He tried to stir the sympathy pot by saying he would wash my windows for free if I would buy his magazines. This would require me opening the door which I refuse to do. He told me he is doing this because his dad called him lazy. Then he pulled his shoulders close together while acting like he had to pee. Really pitifull looking but I won’t open my door for anyone but a neighbor. He claimed he was washing a neighbors window up the street.

Don’t fall for this.

59 brownaround April 5, 2012 at 9:15 AM

This happens in Pleasant Hill all the time and it’s the same MO, stating they are “from the neighborhood…” Can’t stand that crap!

60 Ryan April 5, 2012 at 9:19 AM

I’m thinking the next time one of these fools decides to pound on my door in the middle of the day, I’m gonna ignore it and make myself comfy in my favorite chair with my favorite Ruger SP-101. Then when they think the coast is clear and bust through the back door….BAM

“I swear officer, I’ve never been more afraid in all my life!”

61 Lee White April 5, 2012 at 9:21 AM

#53, I’m glad you phrased that as a question. Otherwise I’d be hitting claycord.com with a subpoena for your IP address and you and perhaps your employer — would that happen to be the City of Concord? — with a defamation of character claim. No, I am NOT a sex offender — registered or otherwise. I have no criminal record whatsoever. If you check the Megan’s Law website, there is no registered sex offender from Concord with the name, “Lee White.” And, yes, that is my real name. I’m not a coward who hides behind a pseudonym like YOU are.

62 anon April 5, 2012 at 9:34 AM

I’m with some poster here who think the police should be proactive not reactive. It’s a shame they can’t be bothered. When there is a subject about them personally they seem to have lots of time to address that.

63 Pleasant Hill April 5, 2012 at 9:51 AM

I had a guy last week come to my house around 2pm, saying the same thing he was my “neighbor” and he was doing a school project – he was from UC Davis…. The crazy part is, this same guy knocked on my door a month ago – with the same line – he was my “neighbor” except this time his school project was with UCSF. I must have caught him in 5 lies that day. He trys to sell some children’s books – for points – and goes on to tell me how my neighbor on Geary just bought this book – but he can’t even say the name GEARY. Now, if he were my “neighbor” he would know how to say GEARY.
The guy is definitely casing the neighborhood because he wouldn’t come back to my house twice in 1 month, around the same time of day each time. Next time he knocks, I’m taking his pic and calling the police.

64 Tay April 5, 2012 at 9:52 AM

Thank you for posting this. I had someone knocking heavily on my door on Tuesday at 8:34pm, I didn’t answer it. I reside in the Treat and Cowell vicinity. I am hearing impaired and anyone who knows me would let me know beforehand that they were coming over. I have been bugged thinking that it might have been one of my neighbors having an emergency, so glad to know it is only scammers. Thank you.

65 Judge Judy April 5, 2012 at 10:01 AM

Good luck with winning that lawsuit, Lee. Even if that’s your real name, the “defamation” you speak of is way too vague for you to prove it was even directed at you? Seriously, how many Lee Whites do you think there are in the world? If somebody puts up a billboard that says “Judy is a home wrecking whore”, I can’t sue just because my name is Judy.

Now, if #53 had said, “Lee White, who lives at 321 Main Street, Concord, CA is a registered sex offender”, you might have a case. But I wouldn’t start counting my winnings just yet if I were you.

66 Val April 5, 2012 at 10:14 AM

I dread this time of year when all the door-to-door “salesman” are in our neighborhoods.

If a security camera is out of your budget range right now, Harbor Freight sells driveway sensors that are battery operated and chime to alert you when someone is on your property. They are affordable ($17ea) (and you can always get a 20% coupon in the paper or print one online) They chime loud enough that the person outside can hear it. You can use it in your entry walkway as well. It gives you a heads up if someone is poking around near your door or on your property before they even ring the bell. You can install multiple ones side gate entries, so forth. They work great. You can shut them off when you are outside working in the yard so they don’t chime.
Here is a link… They sell them in the local PH store :)
http://www.harborfreight.com/wireless-driveway-alert-system-93068.html

67 Lee White April 5, 2012 at 10:29 AM

@Judge Judy, Yes, the element of “identification” would definitely be an issue. How many “Lee Whites” actually live in Concord? I have no idea. I’m not sure one is required to identify an individual as specifically as you described in order to prevail in a defamation lawsuit. Journalists are encouraged to provide as much identifying information as possible — full name, age, and address — to avoid misidentifying people charged with crimes. Win or lose, every lawsuit has a nuisance value of between $1,000 and $5,000. That’s what a personal injury lawyer once told me, but I’m certainly not looking to shake anyone down for money. Money and “prestige” aren’t my motivations. If they were, I’d run for office in California, drive a much newer car, and live in a big house out by Lime Ridge.

68 Paul (formerly) in South Concord April 5, 2012 at 10:41 AM

The suggestion to get a photo of the person(s) has come up several times, in similar threads. Granted, the quality of a cell phone photo or video ain’t the greatest, but it’s something. My little Nikon digital pocket-sized camera is usually laying around here, within easy reach. WAY better quality images.

DIY CCTV camera systems are getting more affordable and easier to obtain. For instance, Fry’s is selling a 4 camera system (night vision capable) with a network-able DVR w/ 500GB hard drive. The DVR (once networked) can indeed be accessed by remote computers & smartphones. Cameras, brackets, DVR, cables, etc… The whole shebang is under $300. Costco usually has a deal on a system, just about anytime you check.
I also advocate hiding at least one camera, inside, with a wide view of the main large space inside the home or business.

I also humbly suggest not tipping your hand to any unknown individual, that comes to your door. If you’re like us and have the ways and means to “defend your position” (wink wink) you’re probably better off not letting a would-be burglar know that he/she could score more than the usual TV, PC, jewelry & such. I’m honestly on the fence about it, as the “show of force” does have value… but we still err on the side of caution.

After all, forget not the ancient wisdom of Sun Tzu:
“Be extremely subtle, even to the point of formlessness. Be extremely mysterious, even to the point of soundlessness. Thereby you can be the director of the opponent’s fate.”

69 Mark April 5, 2012 at 10:42 AM

Can’t we just get an initiative on the local ballot to outlaw all door to door sales in our cities?? Then the police would have to respond to calls, wouldn’t they? How many of you out there ever buy or donate to a stranger at your door. If word got out it was illegal, maybe the scammers would move along to another town.

70 Chet Robbins April 5, 2012 at 11:05 AM

Pleasant Hill, last week two white males, ages approx. 25, one with blondish pony tail and tattoos, knocked on my door at approx. 2:30 Pm and introduced themselves as my new neighbors living with their mother in another home in my complex. They told me her name. Wrong name! They said they were selling magazines to send to our troops in Afghanistan. I pointed to our complex sign that states “No Soliciting”. They left the complex.

71 JT April 5, 2012 at 11:17 AM

#66 I have one of these Harbor Freight set ups for my townhouse in P.Hill

The layout of my place is odd that the front yard and entry way are enclosed by a fence. I have the main motion sensor hidden, so if anyone walks in I’m alerted. The chime is very loud at the highest setting, and even at the lowest setting you will be able to hear it.

I have had the system up for 3 years and have only had to change the batteries.

72 Scott April 5, 2012 at 11:18 AM

i saw a group of kids all gathering around that lime ridge trail area on up on treat blvd the other day they looked suspicious…probably the same people. theyre probably looking for somebody in the neighborhood that they want to payback for something

73 Limeridger April 5, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Same thing happened to me last night in Limeridge at about 7:30. Guy named Justin came up to me as I was exiting my vehicle stating that he lived in neighborhood and wanted sponsorship for points so he could study in London with John Cleese. This guy was white, short hair, blue eyes, about 160lbs and about 5ft9in. When I turned him down his response was “that’s okay we understand that some people just don’t want to help out their neighbors…” This guy did not have opportunity to get close to my house as I kept him in the street. Did not see anyone with him…

74 C Money April 5, 2012 at 11:49 AM

Far be it from the Concord Police to be proactive in apprehending criminals. The #@$%%$^ POS’s just want to hand out j-walking tickets for the $150 revenue spike per ticket. F**k this city. I’m out.

75 anon April 5, 2012 at 12:02 PM

The door bell rings, my dogs bark out the window looking at the person, I go to the window raise my hands, say no thanks and walk away. I never open the door.

76 Random Shmo April 5, 2012 at 12:22 PM

@Kimberly~

I had exactly the same thought!

77 @Judge Judy April 5, 2012 at 12:27 PM

suggest you google LW, concord and see what you get.

78 anonanonagain April 5, 2012 at 12:34 PM

@ Limeridger. “Guy named Justin came up to me as I was exiting my vehicle stating that he lived in neighborhood and wanted sponsorship for points so he could study in London with John Cleese.”

Yeah right. You mean study with John Cleese to perfect his acting skills?? Perhaps this is the lecture he wants to attend. A killer instinct is a terrible thing to waste…….
http://www.utteracting.com/blog/?p=1042

79 anyone remember.. April 5, 2012 at 12:39 PM

when you could click on a posters name and get a profile, what happened to that. might cut down on all the negative postings to bring it back.

80 Angie April 5, 2012 at 12:40 PM

Is it possible to make door to door solicting illegal? If so, ill lead the cause and get some petitions going! Probably be the easiest measure to pass. Who really wants these strangers in our neighborhoods, around our homes and our families? They are either always suspicious, very rude or pushy and won’t take no for an answer. There is no way to know if they are legitimate in the first place. I say, get rid of them all together! It’s not like the girl scouts and kids sell things for school door to door anymore anyways. Thats the only reason I can think of to allow door to door solicitation. I say make,it illegall and make our neighborhoods that much safer. Let scammers know Concord isn’t the city to mess with!

81 Lee White April 5, 2012 at 1:04 PM

It is entirely possible to make for-profit door-to-door soliciting illegal. It might be problematic to prohibit political, religious, or non-profit soliciting. I believe, however, that if the police enforced the existing code that requires these folks to get permits, the problem would be severely curtailed. I realize there are higher priority emergency calls, but police should still respond to complaints about vendors if time permits. If the salespeople cannot show officers a permit, they should get a ticket. Some of these folks have criminal records and could be “casing” homes for burglaries or robberies while they hawk their wares.

82 huey9k April 5, 2012 at 1:31 PM

I don’t care if soliciting is legal or not, if I post a sign that says “NO SOLICITING”, the idiots going door to door better understand that ignoring my sign means imminent pain, no respect, and whatever circumstance I need to engineer to get away with a “self defense” plea

83 burnbabyburn April 5, 2012 at 1:39 PM

What’s the problem? Just shoot them, drag the in the house, call the police and say that they threatened to kill you.

84 Maria S. April 5, 2012 at 1:41 PM

We had a 16-17 yr old white female in our Martinez/Pleasant Hill border neighborhood going door to door about a week and half ago. Extremely smooth talker, selling subscriptions to magazines to send the troops on behalf of her softball team. Said her father was injured in Iraqi hospital, etc. Said she was a neighbor, told all of us a slightly different story. Smelled of smoke. Carried a backpack. Wore a black V.S.Pink hoodie with a dog logo on the front, and jeans. Seemed overly inquisitive. BE ON THE LOOKOUT, some of these kids are incredibly good at smooth-talking their way out of every question you throw at them.

85 @ Maria S. April 5, 2012 at 1:51 PM

Think I got the same girl in Carriage Square yesterday, very smooth talker, said she was from Concord High. She had a very young, girlish face. Even though I know she was with the scam artist in the Mercedes with AZ plates, felt sorry for her. Wonder if these children are coerced into doing this, almost asked her if she had been kidnapped. Sad, sad.

86 Screwy Louie April 5, 2012 at 2:13 PM

bbb @83,
Do it like Anon @55
Remember, Pillage BEFORE you burn!

87 Maria S. April 5, 2012 at 2:17 PM

She did have a very girlish face and I remember she had her hoodie sleeves rolled up and a rash up her left arm. Does anyone have any details on the Mercedes? Older / newer? Color?

88 @ Maria S. April 5, 2012 at 2:30 PM

The Mercedes was new, white, small with Arizona plates, and only a few numbers on the plate, possibly a rental. I spoke with the driver. Middle Eastern guy, very smooth, not accent at all, youngish, not bad looking. He was a complete scam artist, asked me if I knew any homes available to rent in the area “that weren’t on the market yet.” He said he was a coporate auditor for Safeway and has just moved here. Right…so the scan must involve determining which homes are vacant.

89 Ryan April 5, 2012 at 3:22 PM

@ 77…I’m thinking the poster isn’t the “James Lee White” listed as an RSO, but perhaps he is the “Lee T White” who is an FCC registered amateur radio operator? Or perhaps not?

^^^^Phrased as a question so as to avoid attracting threats of litigation^^^^

90 @burnbabyburn April 5, 2012 at 3:45 PM

Burn Baby Burn, spoken like a radical nutcase said, “What’s the problem? Just shoot them, drag the in the house, call the police and say that they threatened to kill you.”

So someone selling a vacuum is reason for you to shoot and kill??? I’m not saying that you don’t have the right to defend yourself if someone assaults you, but you don’t have to open your GD door. You’re a nut. Move to the Ozarks with your gun, live in your run down trailer, and take your meds……..

91 ANON April 5, 2012 at 3:47 PM

Wow. I feel like I’m living in rural Arkansas with all the Claycord nuts and settle it with a gun radicals…….

92 Nom de Plume April 5, 2012 at 4:03 PM

Just had a thought since this works for other vermin: motion sensor sprinklers. Anyone coming up the sidewalk and approaching the door gets a shower. They just might be effective except for those hot days in summer when people prefer getting cooled down. Be sure to warn your friends though.

Please no lectures about wasting water. I’m joking, for the most part.

93 Lee White April 5, 2012 at 4:04 PM

@Ryan, You are correct, although we recently moved from the address listed due, in part, to the number of solicitors who knocked on our door despite signs all over the place that read, “No Soliciting.” (Reminds me, I need to tell the FCC about my new address.) It is not defamatory to call a person an amateur radio operator even if he isn’t, by the way. No worries about litigation for that. 73 de K0LTW

94 Nick April 5, 2012 at 4:10 PM

I had a scummy black guy come to my door in Arcadian Apartments on Clayton road on tuesday, and the first thing he said is hes not selling anything, but offered me magazines and said I dont have to pay right now. I asked where he was from and he said a local school, but couldnt tell me which one. I asked if he had a solicitor permit from concord police and he looked at me bewildered. I slammed the door in his face and said we dont allow solicitors in the apartments and then I called security. I coudnt tell where he went after that.

95 Just a Concordian April 5, 2012 at 4:22 PM

Seems to me I bought my house in the best neighbourhood. The one where criminals run rampant but at least noone knocks on my door to try and sell me stuff. Yay for North Concord.

96 Nick April 5, 2012 at 5:18 PM

And again we have another “Nick”. Just keep it clean and respectful “other Nick”. I don’t need the headache of people assuming you’re me if you step out of line. Do I really need to start using my last name as well???

97 LizG123 April 5, 2012 at 5:56 PM

Ugh. I live in the Sun Terrace neighborhood, and a few months ago I had 2 young girls knock on my door selling magazines. I’m a 25 year old woman, I live in my home alone, and for some reason didn’t feel threatened by these young girls. Before I knew it, they were in my home, eating the freshly baked cookies I’d made, drinking my bottled water and milk, and one used my bathroom. Wait…. WTF?! I could not believe it! I was so bewildered and left feeling like an absolute IDIOT for falling for their smooth talking BS! I didn’t buy the mags, but I felt so taken advantage of and vulnerable. I got an alarm system shortly after and learned my lesson. It is SO SAD we can’t even be polite or hospitable to strangers anymore these days. You can’t trust anyone, sad but true! :(

98 Nick April 5, 2012 at 6:06 PM

@Liz #97, with the number of people that have mentioned this problem in our neighborhood, (sun terrace) and the lack of knocks on my door, I must appear to be one entirely uninviting person. Sad to say, I’m quite pleased with that. Maybe all my tattoos are good for something after all. Time for a new one.

99 spearheadmon April 5, 2012 at 6:19 PM

Black man with a trombone just knocked on my door. Asking for donations to keep homeless people off the streets. Wife answered. When I showed up he took one look at me and got the H*** out of here.

100 WC resident April 5, 2012 at 6:23 PM

This claiming to be a new neighbor must be a new tactic. So far it’s only happened once with me but it seems from reports here that several people in the magazine company are using the trick now.

@Lee White – Unfortunately, it’s not a crime to run a business without a permit though I sure wish soliciting like this was a crime. All the police can do is to run a warrant check and if there are any warrants they would be arrested for that. While they tell the people to leave I have my doubts that many of them leave.

101 Just a Concordian April 5, 2012 at 6:23 PM

@LizG123

who would have thought… we’re neighbors… and I have a few things to sell. Not to mention I love cookies.

102 eknirb April 5, 2012 at 6:27 PM

earlier today, some kid working for comcast rang the bell multiple times, and then pounded the door hard, -we’ve got comcast, you’d think they’d know. just now some guy with a badge that had a big “K” on it (komkast?) rang the bell- where are these people coming from?

103 eknirb April 5, 2012 at 6:29 PM

PS—

the next time someone rings on the door, pull out the camera phone and say, ‘OK, just let me take your photo for my records.’

Bet the reaction is less than enthusiastic.

104 RRRR April 5, 2012 at 6:31 PM

I am sick of the J.W. preaching their religion. Really going dooor to door to convert to your religion, you don’t celebrate shit!

105 Katya April 5, 2012 at 6:36 PM

If I’m not expecting anyone, I don’t answer the door. I have a No Soliciting sign, but the people who ignore it the most are religious groups. Why do they think it doesn’t apply to them?

106 Cowellian April 5, 2012 at 7:02 PM

Katya@105,

I have a No Soliciting sign, but the people who ignore it the most are religious groups. Why do they think it doesn’t apply to them?

Because legally, it doesn’t apply to them. Nevertheless, there is nothing that prohibits you from sharing your religious beliefs with people who come to your door.

107 Anonymous April 5, 2012 at 7:21 PM

It’s not just those from “out of the area”, either. A couple of weeks ago, I was at work and my husband left the house to run a quick errand. While he was gone, a vehicle our neighbors KNOW does not belong in our driveway passed the house a couple of times, then quickly pulled in our driveway. Two men started to jump out and head for our backyard, but an alert neighbor quickly got the license plate number and called the police, who DID respond. The guys quickly jumped back in their vehicle when they saw the neighbor on the phone. Turns out that vehicle belongs to one of the major organizers of Neighborhood Watch — for CLAYTON!! You just never know who the good guys are!

108 Lee White April 5, 2012 at 8:35 PM

Here’s the Concord Municipal Code that applies to door-to-door peddlers:

http://www.cityofconcord.org/business/bizlicense/solicitorsped.asp

109 Ynot April 5, 2012 at 9:39 PM

This is an OBVIOUS problem in our city people! Read all the descriptions given. I believe this pool of criminals have decided to set up camp around here to steal from our fellow citizens, and it pisses me the hell off. We know what’s happening, why can’t we get these f@ckers?! I think the effort of the police may be equal to the effort given by us civilians. We can’t watch this happen and just wait for the cops to handle it all. Right? I just really hate what’s going on here in OUR city. I think if you see these lil’ s#it’s, call Concord P.D. immediatley and be prepared to give them accurate and descriptive information. And tell your neighbors too! I don’t know about you guys, but my neighborhood is tight. We watch out for each other here. I’m not saying bust on everyone you see, but defintiely these Arizonia Plate Using, Magazine Selln’, Cookie Snatching (97) Little Twirps!

110 black man April 6, 2012 at 7:51 AM

anyone see two black girls on Tuesday soliciting, they looked suspicious. I should of went outside and told them I was the watch captain in this hood

111 anon April 6, 2012 at 8:28 AM

The Concord PD is pathetic about enforcing the laws about door to door solictiation. If you have a no solicitation sign at your front door, it is illegal for solicitor to knock on your door. If this happens call the police immediatley and insist that the law has been broken and you want the city to cite or arrest. The dispatchers are rude. Ask to speak to the watch commander. Here is the code section:

“Sec. 18-451. Entry upon signed premises unlawful.

It shall be unlawful for any person, whether licensed or unlicensed, while conducting the business of a peddler or solicitor, to enter upon any residential premises in the City where the owner, occupant or person legally in charge of the premises has posted, at the entry to the premises, or at the entry to the principal building on the premises, a sign bearing the words “No Peddlers,” “No Solicitors,” “No Solicitation” or words of similar import.

:

112 Paul (formerly) in South Concord April 6, 2012 at 10:28 AM

For Pleasant Hill, http://www.codepublishing.com/CA/PleasantHill/
On the left nav bar, click “Title 6 – Business Regulations”. Then click on “6.15 Peddlers”.

In addition to the permitting requirements and all that, 2 things that stuck out were the age requirement (16 yrs) and the fact that they can’t come after dark.

I don’t get many solicitors, but the most recent was well after dark (about 8:30pm w/ sunset around 6:15pm, that night) and the girl at the door was maybe 13/14. Granted, there was a young man (maybe 20-ish) with her, but it was after dark and when I refused the CoCo Times subscription offer from the girl, HE tried to bait me into an argument and accused me of saying something I hadn’t. I took one step out onto my porch, squared off with him and quietly growled “Get of my property”. He ran. Maybe because he suddenly realized that I had 100lbs and 6 inches on him. HA!

113 LostBoysMom April 6, 2012 at 11:24 AM

I live in Canterbury Village and had the little blonde girl at my door the other night. Same basic motus operandi. Knocked real loud, said she lived around the corner, a neighbor had sent her, selling magazines to go to sing at BYU (these kids are creative!). I toll her I could not afford it and she responded that many people are just giving what they could. She had some papers in her hand and a bunch of cash. I said I did not have much cash and she asked me to check how much I had! Everything she said was suspicious. I told her no thanks and she left. Even if she wasn’t casing houses, she obviously was getting some cash out of it. Next time I call the cops knowing she hit so many homes. I agree with a previous poster that if the CPD get enough calls, they will have to do something about it.

114 Puglover April 7, 2012 at 2:20 AM

@#66 Thanks for the great tip on the driveway monitor!

One afternoon last week I heard a “soft knock” at the front door- so soft that the dogs didn’t even react. I found a young man there, very soft spoken and polite, saying that he had been a “bad boy” in his past and was trying to earn his way back into society by selling magazines to earn money for his education. He was quite persuasive and I almost gave in, but told him what I always tell solicitors: I don’t do business with door to door sales, no exceptions. He politely took his leave.
We have also had several visits from men who have leftover meat to sell at a deep discount. That one worries me…No Sale.

115 newmommy April 12, 2012 at 4:08 AM

I just recently moved here a few months ago and had my son. My fiance just got a job in concord so I am home alone for the day, and now I am very fearful that someone will come to my home or try to break in..

116 hmmmm April 12, 2012 at 11:30 PM

every comment states that whoever these people are, they all have Arizona licenses plates. Hmmm ? Sounds suspicious.

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