Hurricanes

Cooper: Be aware of scam artists in times of need

Posted October 13, 2016 4:34 p.m. EDT
Updated October 13, 2016 5:11 p.m. EDT

Money

— Attorney Roy Cooper made a stop in Fayetteville Thursday to visit flood victims and warn residents of potential scams.

Cooper spent time with Sheriff Moose Butler, District Attorney Billy West and other Cumberland County officials while visiting residents in the Mount Saini Housing Development.

He offered words of encouragement, but also warned residents to be on guard in desperate times.

"(Scam artists) will sometimes come from out-of-state. They will even drive around the country to disaster areas because they know people are desperate," he said. "They know people need help now and they know that people are sometimes willing to pay for it up front." 

Cooper said he knows it is hard to be patient, especially when so many have damage to their homes. He recommended taking the time to find a reputable contractor, and avoid paying for things up front.

Cooper told residents his office is already going after price gougers charging outrageous rates for hotel rooms, gas and bottled water.

He also said to avoid giving out personal information over the phone, and to make sure to know where each donation is going.