Suspicious salesmen are going door-to-door in the Metro East, and the Godfrey mayor said they are lying to homeowners while trying to get personal information.
In the past week, there have been close to 20 reports about suspicious sales people knocking on doors in Godfrey, and in some cases, outright lying to residents in order for them to switch their electric service.
It starts with a knock on your door, and what seems like an easy way to save money.
"These folks are in my mother's living room saying 'Just say yes,'" said one Godfrey woman who asked not to be identified. She said her 86-year-old mother was a victim.
For the past week, salesmen claiming to be with three different electric companies have been going door to door in Godfrey and 'slamming' — a technique where salesmen take the information they're given to switch your service without your permission.
"They were able to talk my mother out of identifying information like her name, social security number, date of birth," said the woman.
"Shady sales tactics, and it's not necessarily the company, it's the people they hire," said Godfrey Mayor Mike McCormic. "And they must be working on a commission basis."
Mccormick says the solicitors don't have permits, and often lie to get your attention.
"They're not telling the truth. They're telling people that the contract the village of Godfrey has with the electrical supplier we have now expired in January, which is not true," said Mccormick.
"They swindled my mother. I felt as a citizen and daughter, this is predatory tactics. taking advantage of a senior citizen," said the woman.
With police now involved, city leaders are somewhat confident the suspicious salesmen won't darken any doors steps in Godfrey, at least for now.
"Madison County Sheriff's Department contacted the three companies these people work for and said 'Maybe it's time to stop this stuff' and hopefully that's going to work," said Mccormick.
The woman's mother was able to get her service switched back. McCormick said if you're a victim of these sales practices, call Godfrey City Hall at (618) 466-3381 within 8-10 days of changing your service, and someone can work with you.
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