Traveling salesmen try selling $400 worth of frozen steak to neighbors in the Heights

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – People in northeast Albuquerque have their guard up after some salesmen selling frozen steaks from the back of a pickup wouldn’t leave them alone.

Several neighbors said they are creeped out. They said they felt intimidated and threatened into buying hundreds of dollars of meat.

“Once I realized by the time they left that they were not who they said they were, I got really really mad,” Jaci Szczepanski said.

Neighbors in the Northeast Heights said they feel violated.

“This is my neighborhood,” Szczepanski said. “Get out of my neighborhood.”

This comes after a pair of traveling salesmen tried to make them buy more than 40 steaks for more than $400 near Louisiana and Alameda.

“We are kind of like Schwans,” one of the men said in doorbell video. “We do all-natural products like steak, chicken and seafood.”

The two men hauled in the meat from a cooler in the back of a pickup truck.

“This is kind of good for you,” one of the men said. “It is better than what you get in the store.”

Szczepanski didn’t buy it.

“It doesn’t take a lot to get a bunch of steaks and freeze them in that way and make yourself look like a business,” Szczepanski said.

The men claimed they were with Midwestern Steak and Seafood, but they would not provide a business card.

“Do you have a card?” Szczepanski asked. “Like I said, you can check us out online,” the man responded.

KRQE News 13 did check them out online. The residential address listed on their Facebook page takes you to a trailer park in the International District.

The city said there are no permits listed for the company, meaning they are likely illegal vendors.

“The fact that they did not have any identification or the fact that they had a disreputable-looking old pickup truck,” Mike Nat, who was also approached by the salesmen, said. “I think they went to most of the houses on this street here.”

If people said they didn’t have the money, they said the men pressured them to charge the meat to their credit card.

“I don’t know if I have $400 to give you,” Szczepanski said. “Oh, we take credit card,” the man answered. “It doesn’t have to be cash.

They even dropped prices to make the sale and wouldn’t take no for an answer.

“They got really upset with me,” Szczepanski said. “They got really pushy.”

“The fact that you want me to throw $200 at you and I don’t have it is kind of irritating,” Szczepanski said to the men in the doorbell video.

After repeated rejections, the men abruptly closed up shop and moved on to the next home.

“Shame on you,” Szczepanski said. “Shame on you.”

The city said anyone selling meat must also have a permit with USDA or NMDA if it is locally produced. The city has a call in to see if the company has either.

The city said the environmental health department is able to take unlicensed food vendors to court. While the Albuquerque Police Department said it has not received any complaints about these sellers, the department does warn against door-to-door solicitors.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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