Chesapeake, Va. - Chesapeake Police are warning residents about fundraising scams in the Western Branch area after a recent incident resulted in a teenager's arrest.
Chesapeake Police Officer Sarah Peedin posted the following notice to residents on November 3rd:
"Please be advised the Western Branch schools are not doing any football fundraising right now. If someone comes to your residence or business soliciting on behalf of the Western Branch football team (or schools) please call the police to report it immediately. When you do call the police please try to have a physical description of the individual(s) along with clothing description and a direction of travel. You can call the non-emergency number 382-6161, or if you feel like it is an emergency please call 9-1-1. Thank you!"
Stephanie Solis and her neighbors are victims of the scam. She tells NewsChannel 3 that a teenage boy came to her house on his bike while it was raining and said he was trying to sell candy for Western Branch Middle School... even though Stephanie doesn't even live in that school's district.
Stephanie refused to give the boy any money but later heard that a neighbor let the boy inside her home. While inside, the boy allegedly stole a phone from the neighbor while she was writing a check for him.
Chesapeake Police confirm that a 14-year-old boy was arrested for scamming people in the neighborhood. They would not go into any further detail.
Chesapeake Public Schools say that there is a school board policy forbidding door-to-door soliciting.
There are, however, other football teams in the area that do some fundraising door-to-door. The Western Branch Jaguars are a non-profit football group currently raising money to go to a national competition. They say the fundraising scams have caused them to lose money because people don't believe they are legitimate.
They say that parents should accompany the kids at all times and provide an EIN number to prove they are legitimate if anyone questions them.