Bernal residents are advised to be aware of rogue “magazine salesmen” currently operating in the neighborhood. This week, a rather impressive number of Bernal residents have reported groups of men knocking on doors, seeking to sell magazine subscriptions. When residents decline the offer, the “salesmen” often become surly.
Here’s a Bernal neighbor’s description of an incident earlier this week on Franconia:
The evening before last (Monday, Feb. 10) a young, African-American guy, probably in his teens, wearing a blue sweater came to our door supposedly selling magazines and books. While we were talking, he asked if he could “step into our house,” which I found odd and said, “No.” When I told him we weren’t interested, he said, “Okay,” and ran down our front stairs and out of our yard leaving our gate open.
Last evening another young man came to our door. He, who was also African-American, was dressed in a white shirt and black tie much like the Mormon solicitors that we all see around the city. Before he could say anything I told him that we had told the guy the night before that we weren’t interested and he also said, “Okay,” and exited abruptly. I watched him walk down the middle of the street so I went down our stairs to see if he was going door-to-door.
This is when I noticed a large African-American man on the sidewalk across the street from our house in a red polo shirt. He asked me, “You got a problem?” I said, “Excuse me?” “You got a problem,” he repeated. I told him that I was minding my own business and asked why he was asking.
“I already know what you’re looking for,” was his reply as he started to walk up the street. I went back up to my house and called the neighbors on either side of me.
It turns out that they had been to both houses. A young man had also been at one next-door-neighbors’ house the night before but was espousing religion.
That incident is consistent with several others.
Another neighbor reports:
Notice a pattern?
The solicitors’ intent is unclear, but the whole thing is supremely fishy. They could be really really really really bad magazine salesmen. They could be casing properties to identify targets for a future burglary. They could be cyborg recon droids sent by a hostile alien planet to gather intelligence for a planned invasion and conquest of Earth. Frankly, we just don’t know.
Bernal residents should be alert, and the SFPD seeks your assistance to identify the individuals.
If they knock, do not let the solicitors into your home (where they can survey the contents of your crib). Be aware, keep them outside, bid them a cheerful farewell, and immediately contact the SFPD via the non-emergency number (553-0123) to describe the incident.
PHOTO: Bernalwood Air Force