How to say 'no' to scams

By Anna Yee

May 22, 2013 Updated May 22, 2013 at 7:21 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- With warmer weather comes increased threats of home repair fraud and other scams in the area.

That is according to Peoria Police, who held a presentation Wednesday to help prevent senior citizens from falling victim to scams.

Officers say never let strangers into your home, especially if they are trying to sell you discounted services and be weary of sweepstakes phone calls or emails.

Legitimate winnings do not require you to pay anything upfront.

Also be especially careful of out-of-state and international scam artists.

"We live in a crooked world," said attendee Carol Venzon, who has witnessed a scam. "You don't want to not trust people, but you have to be careful. Just the thought of people not working for what they want. They want to steal from people."

"Basically, if it sounds too good to be true, it definitely is," said Detective Paul Deeb, of the Peoria Police Department, "and that involves home repair frauds, email scams, phone scams. If it is something legitimate, it can wait until you verify or check with us."

Peoria Police say when in doubt, call them. The non-emergency number is (309) 673-4521.

Authorities will hold another free scam presentation on May 29 at 11 a.m. the Peoria Police Department.

To reserve a spot, call (309) 494-8378.

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