It's that time of year again…when the scam artists seem to come out of the woodwork thinking perhaps that warranty departments are too overworked to notice the same old game of "I sent you 'X product' months ago and haven't heard back…so either send me my 'X product' back or just send me something new."
The latest player is one going by the name of David Roth (no relation to the Van Halen band member, we assure you) of Boise, Idaho. A review of warranty service notes shared with SNEWS® reveals that Roth uses a 4917 Wildrye Dr., Boise, Idaho address with a phone of 208-475-4732. It is possible his name is fictitious naturally, or a borrowed identity.
According to Brian Rashap, Marmot's warranty services manager, Roth contacted Marmot wanting first to speak with the president of the company. SNEWS® can assure anyone reading this alert that if a caller wants to speak with the president of any company regarding a return, you can be pretty sure you have a scam in play.
Roth, who stated his company was Terra Systems, told Rashap that after he had sent in a Swallow two-person tent for repair, Marmot had called him back saying it had stitching problems. Roth stated the call to him was sometime in February and that he spoke with a woman who was supposed to call him back. Roth also mentioned he had spoken with the Marmot dealer services rep in Idaho about the tent. He insists he just wants his tent back and that he is tired of waiting. When asked to provide a USPS tracking number so Marmot could find out when it had received the tent, Roth responded that the post office told him they didn't have a tracking number.
SNEWS® has also learned that Roth has been quite persistent in contacting The North Face, demanding that its warranty services procure a tent for him too. Seems Roth has a lot of bad luck with the quality of his tents.
Based on past experience with such scams, we would suspect many other companies will be hearing from Roth before this storm blows over as he seeks to outfit himself with tents, sleeping bags, packs and the like. We would suggest taking detailed notes during any conversation, and referring information to the Boise Police Department, which apparently has already opened a file on Mr. Roth.
Happy hunting, all.