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Thread: Charity "warning" !

  1. #1
    Administrator AirGunEric's Avatar
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    Charity "warning" !

    A little over two months ago, we were approached, out of the blue, to donate an airgun (in this case a T4OPTS kit, retail at the time, $189.99 and we paid the shipping as well) to a little "informal" charity of supposed Ex-RCMP officers in the Toronto-Kingston corridor for a sick boy who, when asked what he might like to feel better (I don't believe the specific illness was ever discussed) he apparently specified a T4OPTS pistol.

    So, after speaking with the gentleman (called himself "Dave Fry") who seemed sincere enough and promised some sort of "thank-you gesture" -i.e. a patch, plaque or whatever (he could not seem to establish any real proof of the 'charity' such as a newspaper article or name that could be verified which would have been plenty) off went the T4OPTS to an address in Grafton, Ontario. After the package is sent, and delivery confirmed with Canada Post, nothing is heard from them/him again. This is quite contrary to most (not all) other organizations/activities prior to this where things were donated, and we received handwritten cards with a "thank-you" message- indicating to me at least that someone took time and effort to write and send the card- usually within a couple weeks of receiving the donation.

    Anyways, I really didn't give it a whole lot more thought until the last couple weeks when I received two more similar-type requests from apparently different people/organizations. Again, they could provide no "proof" of their activities so I chose to decline sending anything to them and then decided to go back to the last person/persons who got a donation and ask them to prove something. At the very least, bad manners is bad manners. I truly hope they are not just people trying to help others who cannot seem to understand that running about collecting donations based on nothing but a good story and then completely forgetting about the people assisting is bad form and a poor strategy to being able to do this for any length of time- but it seems that this is likely just a scam- otherwise the "attitude" probably would not be present and they would be, in my view, a heck of alot more receptive (especially if the story about being an ex-cop has any truth to it) to the idea that they need to follow through on their word in a reasonable amount of time, or at least establish some sort of viable method of confirming they really are a legitimate 'charity' of sorts.

    Either way, their lack of follow-through, even if legitimate, has meant that at least two other organizations that may be doing real charitable work (?) may suffer as a result.

    The email chain from start-to-finish is here:

    ______________________________

    "On 2/3/2012 4:14 PM, Dave Fry wrote:
    > Hi Eric. First of all thank you so much for your kind and generous donation. It was a pleasure speaking with you earlier. As discussed, we will reciprocate with a plaque as well as other police memorabilia items. If you need any other details or information, please do not hesitate to contact me at your convenience.
    >
    > Here is our shipping address:
    >
    > Sheila Fry
    > R.R.# 1 - 2351, County Rd 23
    > Grafton, Ontario
    > K0K 2G0
    >
    > My wife handles the "logistics" end of things. Could you be so kind to include the amount that it cost for you to ship to us. We will re-imburse you that amount as this is not a cost that we feel you should incur.
    >
    > Again, thanks so much.
    >
    > Warmest regards, Dave, Sheila (and the group)."


    _____________________________

    Sent: Monday, April 2, 2012 8:20:55 PM
    Subject: Re: Enquiry from ScopesAndAmmo.com

    Hello Dave/'Group':

    It appears that in the two months since I sent you a donation, other people have come to us to look for charitable assistance- but I find myself asking "Did I get suckered by a/a couple scammers on that T4OPTS?" This tends to have me lean away from assisting other people/organizations that may in fact, have a real need for such assistance.

    In the 60 days since the T4OPTS was sent, other than your initial email (below) I have seen/heard nothing. I don't live in a world of "faith" so sending things into a black hole generally does not satisfy me. I would appreciate something, not some sort of dinky "memorabilia" or such- but maybe some evidence your are in fact a "group" doing real charitable work, not a person out looking for free stuff and leaning on the sick and underprivileged as an excuse.



    Thank-you,



    Eric

    __________________
    Fox Sporting Goods

    Website: http://www.scopesandammo.com


    _________________________________


    On 4/3/2012 10:12 AM, SHEILA FRY wrote: Sir:


    We were saddened to to read your last email. It is not something that we have ever received. Your comments, although without any merit or justification clearly indicate that a donation was not something you originally had wished to do. As such, please send us a formal invoice and we will be more than pleased to reimburse you for whatever costs that you have incurred.




    ________________________________


    Sent: Monday, April 3, 2012 10:42:34 AM
    Subject: Re: Enquiry from ScopesAndAmmo.com



    Hello:

    The issue is that you provided no definitive proof of your charitable activities. On faith, I sent a donation to you and you had made a commitment to send back some gesture as a "thank-you" which, 60 days later still has not been done. Even something as simple as a copy of a local newspaper article outlining your activities at some point in the past would have been sufficient- but nothing has been received. A simple note from someone with a narrative of how things went with the recipient of the donation would also have sufficed. The problem here is the "take it and run" that has seemingly occurred- not how one expects a proper "charity" to operate. You don't take donations and then ignore the donator if in fact you are running a legitimate activity- it is both bad manners and a very poor long-term strategy.

    Do not attempt to turn this around as being some sort of deficiency on our part- you did not do what you had stated originally (we did) and I can only take this to be an indicator that you are not, in fact, what/who you represented yourself to be.

    Your "husband" had indicated he was a retired RCMP officer. Send me an active duty RCMP former colleague of his' name and telephone number (their office in Ottawa) and I will verify that person through internal channels, and in turn your husband- i.e. a "reference check". If this is unacceptable- then your group needs to work on finding a way of defining their credibility before someone like me starts posting "warnings" online to watch out for people making claims they cannot back up.

    Had you followed through on what was stated originally, this would not be an issue now. I am regularly having people come to us with their "hands out" these days, and when I review who has followed through on anything after receiving a donation, I am saddened . As a result, I am now asking people to provide "proof" of who they claim to be- which is a relatively simple task if they are a representative of the Boy Scouts or such as they can be verified by a parent organization. While with you this was in the past- I nonetheless think it particularly egregious if you cannot establish who you are based on the story provided as to the requirement of the donation.

    You lack of follow-through has indeed contributed to "hardening" my mindset. I don't want your money- I want to know you are actually doing something useful for the world. A little friendly talk with your husband proves nothing.

    Frankly, your husband being an Ex-RCMP person, I would expect he should understand exactly where I'm coming from on this- if in fact there is any truth to any of it.





    __________________
    Fox Sporting Goods

    Website: http://www.scopesandammo.com



    "

  2. #2
    Member Dukemeister's Avatar
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    Member, Limestone Beekeepers Guild
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  3. #3
    Moderator poil27's Avatar
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    to bad eric because of one scamer, a goog willing guy with a verry nice buesness atitude and wont be doing kind gesture again.

    f

  4. #4
    Administrator AirGunEric's Avatar
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    Ha! Good catch there, Duke!

    Interesting...

    Now I'm smacking my head...

  5. #5
    Member blade57's Avatar
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    I suspect the cops would take a very dim view of what these people appear to be doing.

    It's really sad that your generous nature has been taken advantage of. Don't let this experience taint your good nature.

    DaveD
    If you don't live on the edge, you're taking up too much room.

  6. #6
    Administrator AirGunEric's Avatar
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    The other night I called the OPP as they are the force that covers the "Grafton" area. Cobourg detachment covers the area. What do I get? A generic voicemail saying they will try to get back to people (this is the main number for that detachment) in 24 hours. So, called the non-Emergency OPP number and get the 911 call centre 40kms up the highway from here.

    Talk to them, they are not sure how to handle it- guy goes off to get some information. Ultimately, they are not positive about what to do, so they tell me to go to the local police force here (Perth Police) where they should take the report and then forward the details appropriately.

    Smartass that I am, I ask "how do you guys share such information- if these people have been pulling a scam, there could be 500 'victims' in 10 provinces and 3 territories."

    The answer; "they might send an email out to the different police forces".

    Email? To what, a 1000 different forces head offices across the country? Then what happens with such an email?

    Anyways, so I dig a bit further; "Do you guys have the ability to input information into CPIC as some sort of investigative tool or 'notification'?" (CPIC is the system managed by the RCMP for all Canadian law enforcement agencies/agents to access information on individuals- i.e. one of the systems to police are checking behind the scenes when you are pulled over in a traffic stop, as well as their own database/records). The answer- "no, we have no such system for investigations".

    Holy Crap !!! This goes back 10 years to when there was that Homolka/Bernardo situation in Ontario- police in Ontario could not connect violent crimes in Scarborough with violent crimes in St. Catherines for a 10-year period while a couple of predators were raping and kidnapping children. One of the things that was supposed to come out of that fiasco was that police were going to be able to access information from one another as an investigative tool to avoid such things occurring in the future. Maybe they did implement -something- for violent crime investigation (?) but certainly did not for general investigative processes.

    So, bottom line is, local PD has the information- officer who took report said he would call the people to get an idea of what is going on and report it to the local (Cobourg) OPP Detachment afterwards. I think the fraud itself may bother them, but I think even more so the idea of someone possibly making a false claim of being a "retired RCMP" may have irritated them even more.
    I'd say I care- but I'd probably be lying...


  7. #7
    Administrator AirGunEric's Avatar
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    Update to this situation;

    Since this was posted- I have received two emails from someone who will not identify themselves beyond an email address, claiming to "know" all about these people/this person and of course they are doing charitable works he/she states. Both emails have been "helpful tips" that I should remove this post as it is slanderous. Email received today indicates that he/they (?) will be taking me to court for such "slander"- problem is, all of the "helpful tips" and bits of information are contrary to the way the world works- this person knows a detail or two that they would not have known if they were not either intimately acquainted with, or are, the people involved in this situation.

    So- let's see what occurs...

  8. #8
    Moderator poil27's Avatar
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    let them go to cort ... as thay wont do anay thing it's empty treat to have you do as thay whant ... no id= not worth ****

  9. #9
    Administrator AirGunEric's Avatar
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    If they are, in fact, legitimate- then all this talk of "lawsuit" would be irrelevant- they could easily provide the references and/or charity documentation that they said they did not possess previously when they were asked at the point of initial contact. However, what I get is alot of supposed second-hand "information" from some mystery guy who has details he should not have, and statements which are nonsensical when looking at "how things work" in the real world. Optimistically, maybe this guy is a genuine, concerned individual and he's being told stories by someone intimately involved in this situation and he is only hearing a story and merely repeating it to me.

    However, I think a lawsuit would be interesting- it it were in fact to become a reality, a countersuit would also be filed in respect to a number of things related to this incident.

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