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New season means new round of scam artists

Since the beginning of the New Year, the King City Police Department has experienced a 7 percent drop in calls for service, which is a good thing because it reflects positively on King City residents.

It demonstrates that we have a safe community which watches out for one another. However, the city's residents can be a target for scams and unscrupulous service providers so I have included in this column some information that you may find helpful.

Phone scam alert

A recent newspaper article highlighted a new phone scam that is occurring in the Portland metro area called "the one-ring phone scam."

The scammers use robo-callers that dial up mobile phone numbers. The calls disconnect after one ring, and the scammer hopes that the victim will see a missed call and return the call out of curiosity.

If this happens, the caller is directed to a costly international location or to an "adult-entertainment" site. In either case, the caller is hit with hefty phone charges.

To protect yourself, you should not call back any number you don't recognize and you should closely check your monthly bill. If you are a victim, immediately contact your service provider and insist that any outrageous charges be removed from your bill.

If you experience no assistance from your provider, contact the Oregon Public Utility Commission at 800-522-2404. To assist other possible victims, make sure you contact the King City police and report that you were a victim of a phone scam.

Always be alert for any type of landline or mobile phone scam.

Springtime clean-up

cautions

With better weather on the horizon, it is time to think about springtime home repairs and yard work.

Unfortunately, this time of year brings out a variety of unscrupulous landscapers, handymen and other fix-it- type individuals, and every year the police department receives reports from homeowners who have been scammed or taken advantage of with shoddy or unfinished work.

The office of the Oregon Attorney General has encouraged homeowners who become victims to file a complaint against contractors and landscapers who have violated Oregon laws by taking money for construction or landscape work that was never performed or for materials that were never delivered.

The King City Police Department recommends that any time you are considering hiring a contractor to do any sort of construction, roof- or gutter-cleaning or landscape work, you check out the individual or company for any complaints and the status of the license of the contractor, including if the individual has a King City business license.

You may start this inquiry by contacting the following:

-- Information on license or complaints about construction contractors, contact CCB at 503-378-4621 or online at www.oregon.gov/ccb; then click on consumer information;

-- Information on landscaping businesses, contact LCB at 503-378-5909 or online at www.lcb.state.or.us; then click on consumer information;

-- For general information on construction and landscape contractors and their complaint history with the Oregon Department of Justice, call the AG hotline at 503-229-5576 (Portland area) or call toll free at 1-877-877-9392 or you may send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.;

-- Check with the Better Business Bureau or online programs such as Yelp;

-- Contact King City City Hall to see if the contractor has a city business license.

Remember, it is important that you report any individual or company offering to do construction, clean-up or landscaping work for an unusually small fee or who wants a large amount of money upfront prior to doing any work. Most important, do not pay for work upfront.

If you feel that you may be the target of unscrupulous contractors, call the police non-emergency number, 503-629-0111, and an officer will contact you.

National Take-Back Day

Though it is a couple of months away, on April 26 the Drug Enforcement Administration in cooperation with local law enforcement is scheduling a day where residents can bring unwanted prescriptions and unused over-the-counter medications for disposal. The program is anonymous, with no questions or requests for identification.

Continue to look for more information, including times and location, during the next several weeks. The King City Police Department has registered as a drop-off site for the convenience of people living in the King City area.

If you have questions, give me a call at 503-620-8851.

You be the judge (or you have to be kidding)

Often cheating in any endeavor will lead to negative results. However, cheating in a relationship results in nothing but unusual outcomes.

A woman in Florida had no patience when it came to a strange woman's phone number on her boyfriend's cell phone. She interrogated him about a number that he called 30 times in the past month. Naturally, the boy friend denied calling the number at all, and she stared whacking him with a spatula (oh, by the way, they having a barbecue at the time).

When the boyfriend's lie appeared to be impenetrable, she took the chicken off the grill and threw it in the pool.

When the police responded to a domestic call, the girlfriend denied hitting the boyfriend with the spatula; however, the boyfriend claimed to have as evidence "chicken particles in his ears." With that said, maybe both should have cooled off by jumping in the pool rather than throwing in the chicken.

So until next time, be good, be neighborly and be safe.