Door To Door Scammers

Kelly Zabala, Writer

On January 23rd, 2021, Downey High School’s instagram posted a warning for their followers. This forewarning told of the scammers going door to door claiming to be a part of an extracurricular as students of Downey or Warren that needed donations. However, the Downey Unified School District has not sanctioned fundraisers for sports teams or extracurriculars, especially one that puts students at risk of contracting the coronavirus.


After being visited by a scammer, a Downey resident, and mother of Downey High student, Sonia Gonzalez, reported this to the @DowenyVikes instagram asking if students were allowed to knock on doors and ask for donations. As a teacher at Montebello High, she believes that it is important to support students, but schemes like this are disrespectful to the school’s reputation.


“I am a part of neighborhood watch on Facebook,” she started. “This kid has been reported a couple of times… he looked about 18, 19, 20, but he was small, so he could pass for a younger kid. You know, it was a Friday night, about 6 o’clock in the dark, and was selling these cards. It was too many red flags, so I turned him away.”


Sonia was not the first and would not be the last to be visited by these scammers. Valerie Carlos, 10, was also visited by him. The boy that Sonia described as small with a turquoise colored backpack, is the same one that Valerie reported to have come to her door. Although, when visiting Sonia, he wore a mask. 


“A guy was trying to knock on my grandma’s door, school gear and even a backpack.” She says. “We didn’t open the door because we had just seen the warning from the school. Plus, he had no mask.”


Although student athlete Andrew Chan, 12, has not been visited by the door-to-door scammers, he believes that these scammers are doing serious harm to the school’s reputation.


“I mean, it’s terrible… I can see why [Downey is] targeted and why it would upset a lot of homeowners since [these scammers] can both gain some buck and make others furious.” He starts. “I hate to hear other people spending their time actually pulling off this scheme, which sounds foolish in my opinion.”


With only one quick mention of it from @DowneyVikes, it is difficult for most Downey residents to be aware of a situation such as this. In hope, this situation will just disappear and families will not fall victim to a quick grab at cash.