Residential burglars frequently use a soliciting cover to case for target homes. These criminals may pose as solicitors, and tell residents who answer the door that they are selling goods or services such as magazines or home remodeling. Burglars case neighborhoods to look for "good" targets - homes that appear to have valuables, or where residents aren't home during the day. Often times, these criminals will knock on the door of residence and when no one answers, they will go to the rear of the home and break in. If you are home and someone knocks that you feel is an illegal solicitor, do not open the door but verbally answer and tell them you are not interested. This will dissuade any of them that are intent on breaking in.
If you see someone soliciting in your neighborhood that you feel is suspicious you should report it immediately by calling (310) 618-5641. If you see someone knock on your door or your neighbor's door and then go to the side or rear of the house and no one is home, call 9-1-1 immediately to report the activity. There is a good chance that the person is breaking into your neighbor's house if they are not home.
Anyone claiming to be a solicitor or selling items must have a City-issued permit (see sample below). Soliciting without a permit is a Torrance Municipal Code violation. If someone who claims to be a solicitor cannot display a permit, call the Torrance Police non-emergency number at (310) 328-3456. We have seen an increase in residential burglaries in the North end of Torrance in the recent months. Many of these crimes were committed using this, or similar, methods. Please refer to our Crime Alert Bulletin for more.
Several criminals have been arrested recently based largely on calls from citizens reporting suspicious activity. You can help us catch these criminals by staying alert to activity in your neighborhood and calling to report it.
SECTION 34.1.5. HOURS OF CANVASSING OR SOLICITING. (Amended by O-1708) No canvasser or solicitor selling or pretending to sell, or offering for sale or demonstration, goods, wares or merchandise of any kind or character, or any article, material or substance, shall ring the bell or knock on the door of, or attempt to gain entrance to, any residence, dwelling, flat, or apartment after 9:00 P.M., in the evening of any day and before 9:00 A.M. in the morning of any day.