West Seattle door-to-door alert: Magazine seller ‘heads up’

August 30, 2010 at 11:31 pm | In Door-to-door alert, West Seattle news | 9 Comments

Stacey shared this alert tonight. A reminder as always – might be legitimate, might not; always ask for a license:

FYI – 52nd and Stevens area. West Seattle neighbors – just a heads up. There is a guy going door to door “selling magazines” on our block. He was a bit too smooth….with the car prowls and burglary on Garlough – it was a concern.

City rules for door-to-door solicitors are listed here; the WSB archive of door-to-door alerts is here.

9 Comments

  1. I guarantee you that guy was casing houses. I live on Hanford and saw him too. He had a shirt and tie as his “disguise”, but no photo ID or other sales paraphernalia. There were two other people in white Toyota MR2 (WA License 299*XI) that were following him along the street. The only house he approached had a door ajar on the side of this house that was visible from the street.

    Comment by Greg — 8:44 am August 31, 2010 #

  2. I just wanted to add that Holy Rosary School’s magazine drive has started but it will be obvious that they are students not adults going door to door and most only go to neighbors they know. Just wanted to mention this.

    Comment by Silly Goose — 11:29 am August 31, 2010 #

  3. I think this guy knocked on my door yesterday late afternoon… live near 54th and Dakota. I was relaxing on my couch and saw a reflection of someone at my door, he was looking in the window, didn’t knock, started to leave down the stairs then came back up, opened my screen door and did the “I know you” rhythm knock. I didn’t move from the couch. After he left I watched him head north on our block, get on a cell phone and not stop at any other houses. I’m sorry to all legitimate door to door, but all things considered, the time of opening your door to strangers has long passed.

    Comment by Kat — 12:16 pm August 31, 2010 #

  4. We had a similar visitor yesterday at 48th and Spokane. Button up shirt with tie, no name tag, clipboard or anything, “selling magazines”. We were unloading our car and he was asking if we were going on vacation. We called it in to the SPD after our mailman approached us a few minutes later to say that he thought the guy was suspicious too.

    Comment by seals — 12:59 pm August 31, 2010 #

  5. I live on 55th near Dakota and yesterday my doorbell rang mid-afternoon. The dogs, being younger and faster than me got downstairs first and started to bark. By the time I got to the first floor no one was in sight and no advertising for lawn service/pizza delivery/painting had been left. Wonder if it was the same person who visited Kat?

    Comment by jwws — 2:42 pm August 31, 2010 #

  6. We had a similar person in our neighborhood (Admiral district), two weeks ago. The guy worked his way down the block, surprised one neighbor who was working in the back yard, when he went around back.
    Unfortunately she did not call it in to the police and the neighbor three doors down was burglarized. . The police have been seeing this happen a lot lately
    Sorry to all the legitimate magazine sellers out there, but totally with Kat’s comment.
    PS: please call the police non-urgent number 206.625.5011, the police want to know about it.

    Comment by Lexi — 7:41 pm August 31, 2010 #

  7. On Saturday September 11 just after 7 PM just after my boyfriend went to the store, in the North Admiral neighborhood, a light skinned African American male in his late teens came to our door, and knocked loudly. He was wearing khaki pants, a button up shirt and tie; he had diamond stud earrings and a small goatee. He did not carry any thing with which to do business (no clip board, no pamphlets).
    When we looked up startled, he sarcastically said “uh oh, black man at the door”. My aunt opened the door to see what he wanted even though we have a sign posted “No Soliciting”. He said that he was with “the KKK, the kool kolored kids, I’m kidding…” He said that he was from a company based in Gig Harbor selling magazines. My aunt said that she was not interested because she had been ripped off in the past by a magazine seller and he went into some analogy about a child drowning. She then repeated that we were not interested. He left our porch, muttering “white cracker MFer” under his breath. My aunt said “what?” and he turned around and repeated loudly to her “WHITE CRACKER MFER”.
    We called the police and three officers patrolled the area. I am not sure if they found him, but one officer said he had experienced something similar and that they were aware of the issue. Our neighborhood gets a lot door to door people with causes or things to sell, and it has been annoying for years. But being called racial slurs in our own home for not buying something puts this at a new level. If anyone sees or experiences something like this please call police.

    Comment by Michelle — 8:26 pm September 12, 2010 #

  8. We live near Dakota & 45th and encountered a gentleman, black 5’9″ well dressed with a star tattoo on the right side of his neck selling magazine subscriptions and books. This happened today, 9/13/10 just before 5pm. He was not displaying any business license (which I read later is required). He did have some sales paraphernalia stuffed in the back of his belt. He presented me with his laminated official written statement. The man said he was with La Familia, an organization that helps promote business education and training and was working his way up. My husband came home while he was giving his spiel and I was choosing the book to buy to help him out from his list of options. It was an expensive book and then there were sur-charges and it became very expensive. My husband wrote the check and he completed the transaction with the gentleman. We were given a receipt with the business name La Familia Sales, Inc at 5775 Soundview Dr., Suite 103C Gig Harbor, WA 98335. The man was not rude, but I did feel like he was a bit too slick. He told us that he was 2 weeks out of his training and had a sad story for me that he was out of the army and had a son to support and that is why he was working with La Familia. After reading other comments here and not being able to find any website locally or a business associated with the address given, we (obviously) became concerned. My husband put a stop-payment on the check and I tried to file a police report, but nothing really to report outside of that the man may have been misrepresenting himself and did not have a business license for door-to-door sales displayed. Wanted to post here to at least document for neighbors what is going on.

    Comment by CE — 10:22 pm September 13, 2010 #

  9. A lady carrying a paper with “la familia sales inc” on the front just tried my place on Woodridge hill in Bellevue. I called bellevue police other business line and they seemed to think taking an account of it was a good idea. Like others, I did not find any listing for la familia in gig harbor, googling “la familia sales inc” magazine didnt’ seem to get much either. If they’re casing the neighborhood I hope she remembers my dog, my disheveled “he works at home” look and the teeny tiny “refuse to be a victim” sticker on my car.

    Comment by Boyd — 3:22 pm September 17, 2010 #

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