Colorado attorney general to address local residents |

Colorado attorney general to address local residents

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers will visit Northwest Colorado communities next week. He is scheduled to host a public meeting at 3:30 p.m. Monday at The Center of Craig, 601 Yampa Ave., to discuss crimes such as scams and identity theft.

Colorado Attorney General John Suthers will be visiting towns in Northwest Colorado next week to discuss crime — specifically, scams and fraud in the state.

Suthers is scheduled to speak in Craig and Steamboat Springs on Monday, and Meeker, Rifle and Eagle on Tuesday.

A public meeting is scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Monday at The Center of Craig, 600 Yampa Ave.

In a news release, Suthers said he wants to use the trip as a way to "connect with Coloradans" and "get the word out" about such problems.

"Consumer awareness is the most powerful tool we have to prevent Coloradans from falling victim to scams and identity theft," he said.

The public meetings are open to all community members with a focus on senior citizens.

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The discussions also are organized by AARP's ElderWatch, which works against the exploitation of Colorado's older residents.

Mike Saccone, the attorney general's communications director, said seniors are generally viewed as "vulnerable" by scam perpetrators.

"They're home during the day and that's when a lot of people prey on them," he said. "A lot of senior citizens don't have the computer savvy for stuff on the Internet and they can get taken advantage of. They can get drawn in by the charitable scams, too, because they want to donate to their communities and that's what they think they're doing."

Saccone said telemarketing and mail fraud, fake home repair offers and lottery scams are some of the issues people have brought to the attention of the attorney general.

"The 'grandkid in trouble' scam is one we've heard a lot about, too," he said.

Suthers and his staff have hosted similar meetings in Alamosa, Colorado Springs and other Colorado towns earlier this year.

"It gives people a chance to ask us questions or bring up things that have happened to them," Saccone said. "We'll be talking about how to protect yourself from identity theft and what steps you need to take if your identity has already been stolen."

Suthers will also meet briefly Monday with the Moffat County Commission before heading south to speak with other communities in Rio Blanco, Garfield and Eagle counties.

Moffat County Commissioner Tom Mathers said the meeting will give the group a chance to "catch up" with one of the members of the state government.

"I'm not sure what all we'll be talking about with him, we just want to find out what's going on with the state these days," he said. "I know I'd like to pick his brain about Colorado's lawsuit against Obamacare."

Mathers praised the attorney general's efforts to visit more rural areas of the state and speak with residents and officials alike.

"We always welcome anybody from the state level to come and talk to us," he said.

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If you go …

What: Public meeting with Colorado Attorney General John Suthers

When: 3:30 p.m. Monday

Where: The Center of Craig, 601 Yampa Ave.

— The attorney general will discuss scams and identity theft in Colorado communities, as well as how to avoid such violations. For more information on the public meeting, call 303-866-5632.

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