Don’t fall for ‘free food’ call in middle of the night

Citizens take warning about a recent telephone scam offering free food vouchers or coupons from Hope House. That caution from Hope House director Bud Jones.

“It’s a scam pure and simple. Don’t fall for it,” said Jones, who heads the agency known for its extensive efforts to feed the hungry in Blount County.

Jones said the scam was reported to him by a woman who said she received a phone call after midnight from a female caller who said she had a letter for her from Hope House containing vouchers or coupons for free food. The caller wanted the woman’s address in order to come deliver the letter right then.

The scam didn’t work. The caller didn’t get the address, didn’t make the delivery, and didn’t gain access for what could have been breakin or home invasion. Instead the called party reported the incident the next day to the Hope House, and the report was relayed to the Sheriff’s Department for investigation.

“The Hope House doesn’t work that way,” Jones said. “You don’t need vouchers or coupons to get free food from the Hope House. Plus we don’t call people in the middle of the night with ridiculous stories such as that. That’s the real tip-off. So be on the lookout, and don’t let yourself be taken advantage of no matter when you get such a call,” he said.