BETHEL PARK (KDKA) — Bethel Park Police are on alert after reports that a suspicious group of individuals have been going around the community claiming they are from a vacuum cleaner company.
Police say there’s been at least two reports in their municipality and four reports in neighboring municipalities.
If so, Nancy Mikus says she’s glad she didn’t fall for it.
“If people have something like that happen, don’t open the door to them,” Mikus said.
On Tuesday afternoon, Mikus says there was a suspicious red car parked down the street. She lives on Oak Park Drive. A Fed Ex truck came by her house to deliver dog food.
“After the Fed Ex truck left, within five minutes, they had been slowly pulling up the street and stopped in front of our house where the delivery was,” Mikus said.
She says an African American man with a can of Febreze in his hand got out of the back seat of the car and came to the front door. He claimed to be with Kirby Vacuum Company and wanted to come inside Mikus’ home to do a demonstration.
“One, he didn’t have a vacuum cleaner with him, and second, we don’t have carpets. My partner just said we’re not interested,” Mikus said.
Mikus says there were about three or four African American men in the car when it pulled up.
Bethel Park Police Chief Timothy O’Connor says a similar incident happened on Clifton Road on a different day. He says he’s not sure if the two are connected.
“We are looking to see if they are legitimate vacuum cleaning sales people or if they’re trying to use this as a ruse to gain entry into someone’s home for criminal activity,” Chief O’Connor said.
He also says they could be cited since they don’t have a permit.
Kirby Vacuum Company left a comment on the Bethel Park Police Department’s Facebook page stating:
“For 100 years, Kirby products have been sold through direct sales as we believe in allowing consumers the opportunity to try our products in their own homes.”
Kirby Vacuum Company didn’t verify whether those solicitors were in fact their employees on their Facebook post.
KDKA’s Amy Wadas reached out to the company itself and is waiting to hear back. In the meantime, if you notice anything suspicious, Chief O’Connor says to call police.