Fake Firefighter Solicits Money in Deal Island - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Fake Firefighter Solicits Money in Deal Island


DEAL ISLAND, Md.- Deal Island Fire Chief Donald Ford says a con artist armed with a sad story and familiar face is soliciting money from residents.

"He came and knocked on the door, and said one of the fireman had cancer," said Patty Speral, of Deal Island. She said her husband told her this fake firefighter asked for a donation.

The visitor claimed the solicited money would benefit the Deal Island Fire Department.
But Ford said that is not the way his fire company does business.

"We send out a letter and instead of going door-to-door," Ford said.

Members of the Deal Island Fire Company are all volunteers and do not get paid. Ford said the company relies on grants and donations.

The annual Deal Island firemen fundraiser was in full swing until the alleged scam artist started collecting funds.

Some residents told WBOC the con artist goes door asking for donations.

"He went to an elder lady house, probably in her late 80s, he asked her for a donations and she gave him her last four quarters."

But some people say they knew something was fishy.

"My husband told him he would write a check and take it down to fire department, he said no and that he was collecting," Speral said. "My husband did not given him any money."

Deputy Nikki Benton of the Somerset County Sheriff's Office said police have a suspect and residents should be on the look out.

"Do not give any donations to anybody that knocks on your door who is claiming to be with the fire department down there," Benton said.

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