South County residents urged to be wary of door-to-door solicitors after recent arrests

Sheriff’s officials are cautioning South County residents to call if they spot people soliciting illegally in their neighborhoods.

Deputies in the department’s south station have recently confronted people trying to sell magazines or cleaning products without having the necessary permits for door-to-door solicitation, according to a news release from the Sheriff’s department.

Officials caution residents to know who they are letting into their homes. In one case, a solicitor was seen looking into a car parked inside an open garage door in Nipomo. In June 2008, a woman was attacked in her home by a person selling magazines.

“From a law enforcement standpoint, unwanted door to door solicitation can be a simple county code violation, however we are concerned that many of these groups have individual members who may be using the solicitation as a cover for illegal purposes,” said Cmdr. Brian Hascall.

Deputies in March arrested five people on suspicion of illegal solicitation: Stephen John Holloway, Daniel Keith Lines, and Aaron Juergan Frazier were arrested on March 16 in the unincorporated Arroyo Grande area, while Daniel Jermaine Mitchem and Ramar Darius McGhee were arrested on March 23 in Nipomo.

-- Cynthia Lambert