City officials say they are being have received an increasing number of reports of a person or people impersonating fire inspectors to gain access to local businesses to commit thefts. On one occasion, an imposter "fire marshal" entered a business and pocketed several high-dollar items, including a Rolex watch, according to police. The same man has tried the same ploy at several businesses, according to police.
The Fayetteville Fire Department says its inspectors always will be wearing a Navy blue uniform with a gold badge and nameplate, in addition to the city of Fayetteville identification that all city employees carry. County inspectors likewise carry county identification.
The Fire Department said it will never try to do an inspection over the phone and that people should not give out personal information to anyone who claims to be an inspector. The department also said it will never conduct an unannounced fire inspection of any private home.
Anyone confronted by an inspector can call 433-1730 in the city or 321-6736 in the county to verify whether the person is in fact a government employee.
Anyone confronted by a person trying to do an inspection without proper identification is asked to call 911.
Written by The Fayetteville Observer