Solicitors targeting elderly in recent larceny cases

By Ryan Cornell

Authorities from the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office are asking local residents to be on the lookout for unlicensed solicitors who are targeting elderly citizens and stealing their valuables.

Lt. Darcy Dellinger of the Sheriff’s Office said these solicitors are going door-to-door and asking elderly residents if they need services such as house painting, lawn mowing and tree trimming. He said these people will often be in groups of two.

“They make their way in the house, distract the people and have someone else take prescription pills, money and anything of value,” he said.

A Shenandoah County ordinance states that any soliciting without a permit is illegal. Dellinger said soliciting permits should either be visible or able to be provided.

He warned homeowners from inviting these people into their homes.

“You don’t have to let anyone in your house,” he said. “It doesn’t matter if they ask you 100 times. You don’t have to let anyone in your residence.”

Dellinger said Mount Jackson, Fort Valley, New Market and Toms Brook have all been areas of solicitation.

People who witness any suspicious activity are asked to contact the Sheriff’s Office at 540-459-6101 with information such as a description or vehicle tag number.

Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rcornell@nvdaily.com