Police are warning the public to be wary of telephone callers who are impersonating law enforcement officers in order to solicit contributions for charities, some of which are genuine and others that do not exist.
Dozens of people have recently called the San Diego Police Department, saying they have been contacted by callers who claim to represent the Police Department, the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department or the San Diego Fire Department, and been asked to donate to charities or buy subscriptions to a magazine, Police Officer Gary Hassen said.
Some of the charities are genuine and the callers were probably overzealous, professional phone solicitors contracted to raise funds, Hassen said. Other callers, who asked for checks to be placed under a doormat for collection, were obviously representing phony organizations, Hassen said.
“The San Diego Police Department does not solicit funds for any charitable organizations. It does no phone solicitation of any kind,” Hassen said.
He advised people who receive such calls to contact the charity directly and check out organizations with agencies such as the Better Business Bureau.