Honor Student Trip Scam

No one likes to be taken advantage of, and I am no different.

Saturday a young man (in his late teens) came to our door and said he lived a street over,  and had made the honor roll at his university (I missed which one he stated).  Then something about a trip to London, and his grandfather making him work for it, blah blah blah.

Bottom line, he was selling books for children in the cancer ward at a Denver hospital. He had a certificate with his name and the name of the organization that bought the books. He had a brochure of the books, and he had a pretty good spiel, and a pleasant, outgoing personality.

I initially said no, but he persisted, and I relented. I bought a few books for the kids, and I gave him $40. Got a receipt for it and everything, including how to track the order at a website.

Today I got curious and checked out the website. Did some more research, and now I am pretty sure it was a scam.

I found many things such as this (not exactly the same as my experience, but pretty close, and the company is the same):


I hope to encounter this young man someday, not only to explain to him how bad it is to take advantage of people who may want to help, but to do so in the name of helping kids with cancer.  In an ideal world the talk would include the use of a 2×4 for emphasis.  Alas, I doubt it will ever come to be.

I’m posting this because I doubt this scam is a one time thing.  Is someone like this comes to the door, take his picture, get his name (my guy was named Jason), and call the cops.

If you think he might be genuine, ask to see his driver license, not the certificate showing him to be associated with a charity.   Ask him (or her) to give you the number of his parents or grandparents.

If his name is Jason, beat the crap out of him.

I don’t often ask people to pass on messages, but this incensed me to no end. Yes, in part because I was fooled, but more so because of the manner it was done. This will undoubtedly make me leery of helping anyone who comes by, even those who may represent legitimate charities.