DECATUR, Ill. (WCIA) — The Decatur Police Department is warning people in the community about a scam it has become aware of that awaits drivers at street intersections.
Officers said that in recent weeks, they received reports of people “aggressively seeking” donations from drivers. From these reports and further research, officers noticed several patterns: they are active at busy intersections, often wear orange vests and carry signs saying the donations are for a child in need of medical care. The signs are not identical, but are similar in nature.
Decatur Police said this is a scam and urged community members not to give money to these people. They added that this group is active across the Midwest and similar scams are happening across the country.
People who see individuals matching the given description are encouraged to contact law enforcement so they can investigate the matter. Officers said that while they are not allowed to prohibit people from asking for money, the subjects can be arrested for theft if law enforcement can prove it is a scam through investigation.