A couple of weeks ago the City of Sleepy Eye had a door-to-door sales company come to town.

A couple of weeks ago the City of Sleepy Eye had a door-to-door sales company come to town. While they were in town, the Police Department received many calls about this company and their questionable business and sales practices.

First, I would like to tell everyone that the company applied for a peddler's license with the City of Sleepy Eye. In order to get a peddler’s license a criminal background check is done on every salesperson. Certain crimes in a person’s past can prohibit that person from being allowed to sell in Sleepy Eye. Once they pass the background check, according to standards set in the City Code, we cannot deny that business a license and prohibit them from selling in town. In my five-plus years as the Chief of Police, I have never had to block a salesperson from coming to town. We only issue two to three peddler’s licenses each year. This company has been back one other time and can apply to come back again.

Second, I would like everyone to know that I did speak with the manager at the company and informed him of the concerns of the individuals who called the Police Department. I asked him to speak with his salespeople to remind them to be professional. The manager stated that they have never had issues like this before.

I do know of at least one person who had a positive experience with this company in town.

I have spoken with the City Attorney after the concerns that arose a couple weeks ago. We will be recommending changes to the peddler’s license ordinance to the City Council, so that if a company comes to town and issues arise, the city could have grounds to deny the license in the future.

I want to take this opportunity to make citizens aware of what conduct is not okay. At no time is it okay for anyone to walk into your home without your permission. A salesperson in your home should not be locking doors behind themselves. A salesperson in your home must leave immediately if they are asked to leave. Nobody should be harassing or making you feel unsafe in your home or on your property.

If any of these things are occurring, please call the Police Department immediately. Even if the peddler ordinance changes, we will need individuals to report and make statements if issues like this do occur, in order to deny a peddler’s license.