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Scam artists using Olbiston Fire to make a quick buck

UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - A warning from the local chapter of the American Red Cross.

As hundreds of displaced tenants of the smoke-damaged Olbiston Apartments struggle to adjust to shelter life, scam artists are looking to use their suffering to make a quick buck.

Red Cross officials got word that someone is soliciting phone donations for victims of the Olbiston fire. However, the Red Cross stresses that they do not make blanket phone solicitations.

"It's disheartening to know that people would take someone's tragedy to try to raise money for their own purpose, but it's not unheard of," said Andria DeLisle Heath of the American Red Cross.

If you get a phone call from someone soliciting on behalf of the Red Cross, contact them or your local police.

Congress has made it a felony for someone to falsely solicit on behalf of the Red Cross.

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