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Local businesses warned of sports poster scam

Local businesses are being notified of a possible scam.

Alexandria Public Schools recently learned of an area business receiving an invoice titled "Alexandria Area High School 2018 Fall Sports Poster." At first glance, the bill appeared to have come from Alexandria Area High School.

The invoice had instructions to make checks payable to "Sports Media 1490 Union Ave #401 Memphis TN 38104." The company was asking for $169 in exchange for an advertisement on the AAHS 2018 Fall Sports Poster.

Fortunately, the local business owner contacted the school before issuing payment, noted school district leaders.

AAHS staff attempted to contact Sports Media at the contact number given but was not able to speak to anyone and Sports Media did not return calls, according to the school district.

An Internet search of this company showed multiple warnings issued by police agencies in the past.

The Better Business Bureau said it has received a pattern of complaints against Sports Media concerning sales issues. The complainants are primarily business owners who say that a salesperson for the company contacted them by phone and asked if they would like to renew their advertising and place an ad in a calendar or on a poster for a local high school.

More than one complainant decided to purchase an ad, but later learned that the high school in question had no affiliation with Sports Media, said the bureau. All complainants, whether they placed an ad or not, received invoices for as much as $169.

A Better Business Bureau investigation showed that the address Sports Media was using is a UPS Store and there was no reason to believe that the company is actually located in the Memphis area.