According to Vinton Fire Chief Harry Smathers, he was made aware of the situation on Monday evening after a Vinton resident warned him that she had received a phone call from an individual asking for a $25 donation to benefit the fire department.
“She asked me if we were out soliciting money and I said ‘no,’” Smathers said. “We only do that once a year for our boot drive ... but we are not on the street or calling people soliciting any money.”
Smathers reported that the annual boot drive, which is organized to help the fire department purchase necessary equipment, has already been held this year and will not be held again until 2012.
The reported telephone solicitation scam is in no way endorsed by the fire department, according to Smathers.
Individuals who receive phone calls from individuals attempted to solicit funding for the Vinton Volunteer Fire Department are advised to hang up and disregard the call. If the caller continues to harass the resident, a report about the incident can be filed with the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office.