Security systems making people targets

PETERSBURG, Va. — Neighbors, and now police, want to know more about a man seen going door to door asking to help homeowners with ADT security systems change the batteries on their alarm systems.

The man may not have broken any laws, however police wanted to talk to him about his actions.

The man approached several people in various Petersburg neighborhoods over the weekend. One woman became nervous when the stranger addressed her by name.

“I’m like how would someone know my name,” LaShunda Young said. “I was so terrified and shaken up, because I was like where did this man get my information from? Who is this man?”

She said the man told her he was from ADT and had to replace the batteries in her security system. She said the man claimed his company was supposed to call ahead and tell her he was coming. When she declined his service, he told her she needed to sign paperwork to verify the refusal.

“I said ‘no, I’m not signing anything until you leave my property,'” she recalled. “Once he realized I was taking pictures, he quickly got into his car and skidded off.”

The man was described as a white male in his 30’s or 40’s, 5’8″ tall wearing a collared shirt and khaki shorts.

Young said she was not sure if the man was an actual ADT employee, a scam artist trying to rip her off or a burglar casing her home for a future hit.

Adrienne Washington shared similar concerns when the man knocked on her door Saturday morning.

“I told him I wasn’t interested and it seemed kind of strange for me to have ADT as long as I have, that someone would just show up,” Washington said. “Anytime  they’ve come in the past, it’s been a scheduled appointment.”

While police investigate the incidents, ADT advised to be proactive if someone claiming to be from the company knocked on your door.

“Ask for photo identification and/or a business card of who is at your door,” ADT Corporate Affairs Director Bob Tucker advised when asked about ways to avoid becoming a scam victim. “Call your current security company to confirm what you’re being told and request literature be left behind so you can study it before taking action.”

Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to call Petersburg Police at 804-732-4222.

22 comments

  • matt

    if he was up to no good why would he bother with getting the refusal signed?and adt’s reply seems kind of weird.so was this man from your company or not?you dont wanna say maybe because you didn’t call ahead or was this just a upsell attempt gone wrong?

    • HClapp

      To sign the refusal you have to open the door enough for him to get inside if he so chooses that’s why.

    • Larry

      “why would he bother with getting the refusal signed?”
      To put more pressure on the victim. ‘If you won’t let me into your home, you’ll need to sign this waiver making you liable for any property lost if the security system doesn’t work.’

    • HClapp

      Why would they upsell their product to someone who already has their product? We had a similar incident here in Raleigh, NC where a guy was going door to door and asking people if they had ADT or if the sign was one that was left in their yard by a previous owner. Said he was collecting old ADT signs. We called ADT and they told us they contract their services out so they don’t always know when someone will be in your neighborhood. Sounded to me like the guy was checking to see who had a security system so he could come back and rob them.

  • Paula

    He is not going to change the battery. He going to take it out or put in a dead one so when he come back to rob the house the alarm will not go off.

  • mbaker9105

    I don’t like anyone coming on my property unless it’s the A/C company, my quarterly pest control, or anyone else I hire to do work. Pest company is very good about leaving a message 2-3 days prior saying they will be by. Our development is private, everything including the streets and landscaping maintained by the Association. There is a no soliciting sign posted coming into the neighborhood. Yet some still persist. Verizon FIOS is the worst. This spring I was working on some shrubs in front of the house, back to the street. Corner of my noticed two kids walking right across the driveway and onto my about 3 week old grass. I said “whoa, off the property please” The street is only 25 feet away. The one mouthy kid say “off the property?” I said “yes, please”. They seemed confused. I asked “who are you with”, “Verizon”, I responded not interested, and he kept on with his silly pitch. Once more I said please off the property, and that there was a no soliciting sign entering the neighborhood. Mr. Mouth says something smart*** like “well, we have the police’s permission” or some such nonsense. I didn’t go any further, what authority would these supposed “police” have anyway. I told him again, not interested, goodbye” He continued running his mouth going up the street. His partner was smart enough to say nothing. I debated telling him I’d have his summer job or whatever for this and call Verizon, but just let it go. In this society we already have a lack of privacy almost everywhere you go, your property is your own little castle and you should be free of pestering trying to enjoy your off time. One of the primary reasons I also don’t have a house phone. Only people using that are telemarketers. Good thing these ladies were smart enough to question the employee or whatever he was.

    • Jay

      “….running his mouth…”
      Sounds like some backwards butt head, far older than her 64 years.
      Get over yourself. Five to six sentences should be plenty.
      Peace!!

  • Tigger

    He came to my house in Richmond maybe 2 months ago…it was 9:45 @ night! i told him through the door with my dad on the phone that i wasnt interested he put a card in the door and left! then i called 911 immediately because it was so strange!

    • Larry

      Even photo ID isn’t foolproof anymore. Anyone with access to a color printer can save a copy of any company’s logo (ADT, Verizon, Dominion Power, etc.) off the internet and create a 3″ X 5″ badge with their own picture on it.

  • lt

    adult canvassers /solicitors don’t bother me as much as the kid solicitors that get dropped off at the street corner w/ a tote full of stuff. I always suspect they are casing my house/ neighborhood.

  • MB

    The logo on the side of the car was for SAFE Security. They are based out of San Ramon, CA. I used to be employed by them. What this man was doing is a common scheme in the alarm industry to make sales. They target homes with security signs and do their pitch about changing the battery and pretend to belong with the company you have. Once they finish changing the battery, they ask you to sign a form stating the battery was changed. What you are actually signing is a brand new contract with a brand new company. If you don’t realize this and cancel it within 3 days, you are locked in. The only way out is to pay the contract in full. Standard contracts are for 36 months, at around $40-50 a month. The entire alarm industry is shady and scummy.

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