Tuesday, June 18 2013, 09:14 AM MDT
Police Searching for Accused Thief who Targeted Home Alarm Customers
Produced by Michelle Poe and Kate Valentine
Photography by Brian Morris
Edited by Aaron Colborn
(KUTV) Salt Lake City Police are asking for the public’s help to locate a man they say stole from several elderly people.
Police say Ben Sutherland would see signs for alarm companies in front of homes. He would then knock on the door and claim he was with the alarm company and was there to collect money for varying alarm related services.
Sutherland was the subject of a Get Gephardt investigation in February, 2012 after Salt Lake City resident Linda Lemmon said he knocked on her door claiming to be from her home alarm company, Vivint. Linda says Sutherland wrote on her Vivint contract that he needed $100 for a city alarm permit and that he would only accept cash.
Linda says she was suspicious and told Sutherland to come back later. She called the police and learned that city alarm permits are not $100, they are free.
When Sutherland returned a couple hours later, both the police and Get Gephardt cameras were waiting for him. Sutherland said he did not work for Vivint. He claimed that he worked for a competing alarm company and was there to simply try and get Linda to switch. He said that Linda was wrong and that he never claimed to be with Vivint.
Linda never paid Sutherland a dime.
Now, the Salt Lake City Police have built a case against Sutherland. They say he did not work for any alarm company nor did he have a permit to sell alarms. Still, they say he was able to trick several people into to giving him money. For that, Sutherland now faces four, third-degree felony counts of theft by deception. Police want arrest him, but they can't find him. A warrant has been issued for his arrest. Police say Sutherland’s last known residence is in Logan, Utah. The thefts for which he is wanted were committed in Salt Lake City.
If you know Sutherland’s whereabouts, Salt Lake Police would like to hear from you. They can be reached by calling 801-799-3000.
(Copyright 2013 Sinclair Broadcasting Group)