The North Royalton Police Department (NRPD) recently posted a potential scam that has been circulating of late. They recommend that residents be alerted to the circumstance.
This potential scam is posted on the NRPD’s Facebook page, and it is regarding the sale of counterfeit merchandise. Police have posted the following on their Facebook page: “Unfortunately, it appears that scammers are attempting to cash in on our Department’s image and likeness with counterfeit merchandise once again. Please be advised that the North Royalton Police Department DOES NOT sell branded merchandise to the public and anything for sale attached to a Department Facebook post or Tweet is in fact fraudulent.”
North Royalton Police Chief Keith Tarase said that when some people press the “like” button on the North Royalton Police Department’s Facebook page, a link will appear which then directs to a website which shows a picture of a hoodie with the NRPD’s patch on it. Tarase said “it pops up as a comment and tags the people that commented, so they see the comment with a link to a website.” The picture is said to have been a cut and paste job, with the patch covering the front of the hoodie. The NRPD emphasizes that they do not sell merchandise such as that. They are concerned that residents may go to the site, give personal and credit card information, and never receive merchandise. Luckily, at this time, there have not been any comments or complaints about it, according to Tarase.
Other scams that have been reported recently involve residents being asked to pay with store gift cards. “You should never have to pay with a gift card, especially a store gift card, said Tarase.
The NRPD advises that any time someone unknown tries to rush a person into doing something that is related to money or personal information, a red flag should be waving for that person to stop what they are doing, especially if the conversation takes place at night, on the weekends, or during a holiday. They advise to “slow things down. It can wait until the bank is open. Ask who they are specifically, where they work, what bank branch, who is your supervisor, etc. Give them NO INFORMATION.” They add, “call your local bank branch or the bank’s 1-800 number after you have looked it up yourself. Do not trust any numbers that they give you. If someone arrives at your house, take a photo of them with your cell phone camera, their vehicle, and most importantly, their license plate. As we’ve said before, You CANNOT pay your overdue utility bill with songs (iTunes Gift Cards) Indeed, no legitimate business takes gift cards as payment for debts.”
They also highlighted some other popular scams:
• Your grandchild/ child/ nephew IS NOT in a foreign jail and needs bail money wired to them.
• As a US citizen, you CANNOT win a foreign lottery (don’t send money to cover taxes).
• Any time anyone unknown to you wants you to wire money IT’S A SCAM.
• If someone tells you your computer has been hacked, DO NOT GIVE them remote access to your computer or passwords.
• After major disasters there is an increase in fraudulent charities being set up. Everyone wants to help, but do a little research before committing any money and make sure it’s going to someplace that will help people.
The Cuyahoga County Consumer Affairs Division also adds that if a resident receives a call that they are about to be arrested for missing jury duty, or get a call, text or email telling them that they are about to be arrested for anything, it is a scam. If someone comes to the door threatening to shut off utilities if the resident does not pay, it’s a scam. “Utilities do not make surprise calls regarding shut offs,” according to Consumer Affairs officials. They add, “never give any account or personal information to someone who calls or knocks on your door. Do not show your bills to solicitors of any kind.”
Report suspicious calls and emails to the North Royalton Police Department at 440-237-8686, Scam Squad at 216-443-SCAM (7226) or online at

Contributing Writer