The Oak Park Police Department has warned Oak Park residents about a recent scam involving home repair offers. Men in work clothes driving pickup trucks have been knocking on doors and informing residents that there are repairs needed on their homes. The men claim to have been working in the area when spotting the fabricated repair needs.
The suspects have entered homes under the hoax of looking at repair needs. Once inside, they have stolen money from homeowners. The men have also made phony repairs and then demanded outrageous amounts to pay for the “repair”. Suspects involved in the scam have identified themselves as Village employees and construction company employees. Oak Park Police Chief LaDon Reynolds warned, “These con men and thieves often case the neighborhoods to identify individuals they think might be easy prey. The best defense is to just not open the door to a stranger.”
The Police Department has recommended the following precautions:
- If someone knocks on the door and asks you to step out of your home for any reason, try to lock all doors before exiting and take a key with you.
- If you receive an unexpected visit from someone claiming to be an employee of the Village or a utility company who wants to enter your home, ask to see official identification. Village ID cards feature the employee’s photo, name and the Village logo on the front.
- Do not allow transient workers to perform repair work on the spot without providing a business card and allowing you to check on the reputation of the business.
- Avoid being the victim of a scam by being wary of anyone who visits your home without an appointment offering to do home repairs on the spot.
- If you are in doubt or feel threatened, lock your door and call 911.
If you have any information about these suspects or see something suspicious in your neighborhood, be sure to call the Oak Park Police Department at 708-386-3800.