Reader alerts: Solstice Park, Gatewood Hill

Two reader reports to share tonight – first, an encounter near Solstice Park (we received this in e-mail but it’s since turned up in the WSB Forums, where some are wondering if it’s a person who’s been arrested in the area before – read it here); second, a door-to-door alert – read on:

From Paul:

I’m in the Gatewood neighborhood, Austin off of 35th. I work from home and today someone rang my doorbell. Since I was not expecting anyone I did not answer the door but looked out my window and saw a fellow in a blue shirt with some kind of ID tag on his shirt carrying some kind of shoulder bag. I figured he was soliciting something and would leave info on my doorstep since I had seen him crouch down at my doorstep, but after he left I found there was nothing left on my doorstep. This made me suspicious and thought I would take a stroll through the neighborhood to see if there was any other suspicious activity. As I headed in the direction he was going I saw him and another male on 35th in front of an apartment building just chatting for a few minutes. I didn’t want to seem obvious so I got in my car and thought I’d park somewhere where I would be inconspicuous and monitor the activity.

I drove to see if they were still on 35th but they had left, I drove around the neighborhood and saw the other male standing at 36th and Webster looking towards 36th. He was still there when I drove back around the block. When I came back to Austin I saw the male who came to my door at the corner of Austin and 37th and this time I rolled my window down and asked him what he was selling because I had seen him come to my door. He said he was selling cleaning services and offered to do a demonstration on my car which I told him I was not interested in. I told him that there have been robberies in the neighborhood and that I just wanted to find out what was going on. At this point he chuckled and said he was one of the good guys. I then asked him what company he was with and he stated he was with Superior Cleaning Services. He seemed to be polite and cordial, but you just never know. Anyways, just wanted to put this out there so that folks in the neighborhood could be on alert in case these guys are not legit and are out there casing homes in the area. If they are casing homes hopefully they realize that now they are being watched.

Would have called the police had I seen something more sinister going on, but did not want to overreact if they really are just selling services door to door as that can’t be an easy job as it is.

Again, we know there are many legitimate solicitors in the world. However, there also have been many burglary cases that began with people posing as solicitors or knocking on doors, so we share reports like this just in case.

3 Replies to "Reader alerts: Solstice Park, Gatewood Hill"

  • Beachmaster July 1, 2010 (7:48 am)

    Saw them get dropped off on 35th last night. The burgundy van had out of state plates. Both times I’ve seen this happen, both salemen first started their rounds by taking a 10 minute smoke break before wandering the neighborhood. They only wandered an hour or so before the van picked them back up.

  • mo July 1, 2010 (9:43 am)

    well that’s interesting that they were selling “Superior” brand cleaning supplies. Yesterday two young women came to my door selling “Advanage” (no T) Wonder Cleaner. When I said through my window that I wasn’t interested, they wouldn’t leave. I insisted they leave, and finally, reluctantly, the 2 women departed my porch, groveling and making faces. For saleswomen, they had pretty bad customer service. I then watched them go door-to-door canvassing the whole block. This was early afternoon in the Morgan/High Point area east of 35th. They didn’t seem to be looking around casing joints, mostly it looked like a classic door-to-door sales scam. I say scam, cuz I read some troubling stuff online about Advanage door-to-door sales tactics and rip-offs, but who knows.

  • jaems July 1, 2010 (10:25 am)

    yup, a guy came to our door yesterday trying to sell a bottle citrus cleaner. started off with ‘this will clean your windows, and finger prints will not stick to it for a month’, and proceeded to spray the window, wipe it off, saying try it. my finger make a big print. he says, ‘well its not bad for carpet cleaner’. oh he had ALL the reasons why I needed to buy it for $40, avoiding the fact that it said msrp $35 on the bottle.
    I politely declined his offer about 7 times, before he finally left and went to my neighbor’s. fun fun. I really hate the feeling that i have to hermetically seal the house when we leave.

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