A reader tipped us off on this one…Sometimes, as is the case in this instance, it’s better to keep the commentary to a minimum and let the story write itself. Thanks to KCTV5.com for reporting on this:
OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — A Johnson County woman said a man who said he was a census worker asked her some questionable questions.
Overland Park resident Kim Mertin said that when she opened her front door on Monday to find a man claiming to be a U.S. Census worker, she answered his questions. She said he started with the expected questions — “How many people live here?” — but it didn’t take long before the talk took a surprising turn. Mertin said the man commented about her clothing, asked if she’d like a back rub. She said he even asked if she “was wearing pink undies.”
Mertin said she felt immediately uncomfortable and started to back away, but it wasn’t just the conversation that bothered her.
“On several occasions, he touched himself,” she said. Mertin went inside, locked the door and called police. She also sent the Census Bureau an e-mail, assuming the man must be an impersonator. But, it turned out the man was really employed as a Census worker.
“It was shocking,” said Sydnee Chattin-Reynolds of the Census Bureau.Chattin-Reynolds said that in her 26 years with the Census, she has never dealt with a situation like this. All employees go through vigorous background checks, and additional screenings once hired, she said. For privacy reasons, Chattin-Reynolds said that she could only say that the situation was handled.
Mertin said she felt that wasn’t enough. “I felt I should have been told right then and there that this gentlemen would no longer be out doing what he was doing,” said Mertin. Reynolds said this part of the Census sets them up for the mailings that will go out in 2010. She said this is a rare and unfortunate incident during this important process.