If you’re home during the day and hear a knock at the door, your first instinct might be to ignore the probable solicitor, but that’s not always the best idea, according to the Tampa and Temple Terrace police departments.
In an email forwarded by Community Service Officer Tracy Mishler to members of the Temple Terrace Crime Watch Aug. 6, Lisa Timmer, TPD’s neighborhood affairs liaison, explained why.
“When an uninvited guest knocks at your door, you may be tempted to stay quiet so they leave,” she wrote. “This will work if it is truly a door to door solicitor, however, if it is a burglar, they may be checking to see if you are home.”
According to Timmer, here’s what you should do instead:
- Answer loudly through the door, state that you are busy, and tell whoever is on the other side to have a nice day. Say this is a firm voice.
- If they continue to knock and make excuses, loudly inform them through the door that you are calling the police. This will usually send them packing.
- Call Temple Terrace Police Non-Emergency at 813-989-7110 or Tampa Police Non-Emergency at 813-231-6130, depending on where you live.
- Give the best description you can and the direction of travel.
“Hopefully, an officer will intercept them and find out what their true motive was behind going door to door,” Timmer said.