Police are warning residents to be on alert for scam artists targeting shoppers along Manchester Road.
According to the Town and Country and Manchester police departments, a resident was in a retail business parking lot along Manchester Road during the evening when a female in her 20s approached her. A crime alert sent out by both departments stated that the woman claimed she needed gas money to get to her mother's house in Cape Girardeau. She also reportedly told the would-be victim that her boyfriend was after her and that she had to get away quickly.
Police stated that this is scam that occurs periodically and other shoppers have reported similar incidents at retail centers along Manchester Road.
"We recommend that you politely refuse any further conversation if you are approached in a similar situation," police stated in the alert. "To immediately diffuse the situation, and to discern between a real emergency and a scam, walk away and call 911 on your cell phone, informing the person that you think they need police assistance."
Police also advise residents to explain the situation to the police dispatcher and provide a description of the person and any vehicle they have.
"If it is a scam, the subject will probably not stick around to converse with officers," police stated in the email.
Authorities do recommend residents call 911 immediately so police can try and locate the individual while they are still in the area.
*Please contact Local Editor Gabrielle Biondo with any questions regarding the above reports.