Area police warn about solicitors
From Staff Reports February 27, 2013 4:12PM
Updated: April 1, 2013 11:47AM
Police officials issued warnings Wednesday about allegedly misleading electricity-supply soliciting in Bartlett and about requests for charity donations allegedly on behalf of the sheriff’s office in McHenry County.
In Bartlett, police report they have received several complaints about retail electricity suppliers attempting to solicit new business in the village.
Police Sgt. Geoffrey Pretkelis said some of these solicitors are incorrectly telling residents that they are with ComEd or the village-approved electricity supplier in Bartlett. Actually, the village does not have an electricity aggregation program at this time and has not selected any electricity provider on behalf of the residents.
Also, he noted, ComEd is the electricity distribution company regardless of which supplier generates the electricity, so he said there is no reason for ComEd to go door-to-door to solicit business from residents.
Pretkelis said residents are encouraged to visit www.pluginIllinois.org if they have any concerns about the company or individual attempting to solicit electricity service. On the website, the information can be located by clicking on “Your Electric Choices” at the top middle of the Web browser and then clicking on “List of Suppliers” on the left side of the browser.
He also encouraged Bartlett residents to pick up a free “No Solicitors Invited” sticker from the main office at the village hall, 228 S. Main St., and immediately to report any suspicious activity to the police department, at 630-837-0846.
McHenry County Sheriff Keith Nygren said his office has received several inquiries about telephone solicitors using the sheriff’s office’s name.
“Throughout the year, telemarketers have solicited donations from citizens within McHenry County on behalf of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 118, an autonomous fraternal organization exclusive of the McHenry County Sheriff’s Office,” he said in a statement. “All money solicited by telemarketers in the interest of Lodge 118 are used by that organization for its purposes alone; none of the funds raised by this organization are distributed within the sheriff’s office nor, as sheriff, do I authorize, endorse or control the fundraising techniques employed by it. The McHenry County Sheriff’s Office does not solicit funds for any reason over the telephone.”
Nygren urged anyone bothered by such solicitors’ “forceful tactics” to call him personally at 815-338-2144.
He said the Office of the Illinois Attorney General also can be contacted at 312-814-2595 and more information may be found at www.illinoisattorneygeneral.gov/charities/investigate.html.