Jones County Sheriff’s Office warning residents of resurgence of ‘Pine Straw Scam’

The Jones County Sheriff's Office is warning of a possible resurgence of the 'Pine Straw Scam.'
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Pine Straw Scam
Pine Straw Scam

GRAY, Georgia(41NBC/WMGT) — The Jones County Sheriff’s Office is warning of a possible resurgence of the ‘Pine Straw Scam.’

A simple knock at your door could seem like a friendly face, but you could be moments away from falling victim to a pine straw scam.

There are a few things you should do, says Lieutenant Kenny Gleaton with the Jones County Sheriff’s Office.

“Be vigilant, be aware of your surroundings,” he said. “If you’re doing business with someone that you’ve never dealt with before, you just really need to pay attention to what’s going on.”

According to Lt. Gleaton, surrounding counties are beginning to see an increase in this scam.

It’s where people come to your home, offering to place pine straw around your home for a low dollar amount, but moments later, they’ll bully you into paying them more to lay out the rest of the bales.

“Home owners just need to make sure before any work begins that all the parties are in agreement on exactly what the final price will be, that exactly how much pine straw is going to be put out, and it’s often a good idea to put it in writing,” Gleaton said.

The Better Business Bureau says this scam is typical during spring and fall.

“What I tell consumers, when someone comes to your door, don’t ever buy right then,” he said. “But if it’s something you want, then get two or three quotes and call that person back,” President and CEO of the BBB of Central Georgia Kelvin Collins said.

Collins says the scammers usually target the elderly.

He says you should ask about licensing, check their identification and verify the individual and company.

“A lot of the ones that are running the scams are from out of state,” he said. “It’s not the local pine straw companies that are causing this type of issue.”

The BBB and the Jones County Sheriff’s Office say you should never feel pressured into paying for something that makes you uncomfortable.

Categories: Featured, Jones County, Local News, WMGT