If You Like Girl Scout Cookies, Police Have an Urgent New Warning for You

Some cookie lovers were shocked to learn what happened with their orders.

Whether you were a Girl Scout yourself or just a supporter, chances are you've indulged in one of their famous cookie varieties. When Girl Scout Cookie season arrives, many of us are eager to place our orders for Thin Mints and Samoas (or Caramel deLites), in the winter and early spring—and we anxiously await their arrival. But police have issued a new warning to Girl Scout Cookie lovers, and you'll want to keep this in mind if you ordered a stash this year. Read on to find out what the authorities are asking you to report.

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These beloved cookies have been around for over 80 years.

girl scout holding cookie boxes
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Girl Scout Cookies were introduced over 100 years ago, per Vox, but on a much smaller scale than we see today. In 1917, a troop in Muskogee, Oklahoma, began selling homemade cookies to fund different activities. And over the next several years, Girl Scouts—often with the help of their family members—began baking simple sugar cookies to sell. In 1934, the first commercially baked cookies were introduced, but 1939 was the real red-letter year, as Thin Mints, then known as Cooky-Mints, first came on the scene. Today, the cookie program has grown to be the "largest financial investment in girls annually in the United States," according to the Girl Scouts.

Cookie names (and taste!) vary depending on where you live, but regardless of whether you recognize Tagalongs or Peanut Butter Patties, they hold the same sentimental place in our hearts.  Recently, however, cookie sales turned sour in New York, and some eager buyers ended up falling for a crafty new scam.

Police are investigating the case of the cookie capers.

girl scout cookies stacks
Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock

A real-life cookie monster has taken hold of Suffolk County, Long Island, CBS New York reported. Police on Long Island have warned residents of incidents where a young girl and an adult male have taken orders and money for Girl Scout Cookies, but never delivered them. Police have received 11 reports of the scam thus far, according to CBS, and are investigating possible connections.

Cons occurred in mid-April in Lake Ronkonkoma, Bohemia, Patchogue, Shirley, and Mastic, ABC7 New York reported. And as cookies should have been received by now and Girl Scouts do not take payment upfront, red flags went up.

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Neighbors are concerned about the child's welfare.

young girl knocking on door
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Kevin Zasowski, one of the duo's victims in Patchogue, told ABC7 that a girl between the age of five and six approached his door and asked if he wanted to buy Girl Scout Cookies. Zasowski obliged, handing over $20 for four boxes. The man, suggested by news outlets to be the girl's father, stayed on the street, he said.

"She was so cute," Zasowski told CBS. "You couldn't resist her."

Another resident who was swindled into "buying" cookies, Nick Zavesky, noted his shock at the new scheme, also expressing concerns about the little girl's wellbeing. "I like to help every organization. I order them every single year. Who would've thought a scam like this would happen?" Zavesky told CBS. "It's not about the money. It's about the principles you're teaching your child."

The Girl Scouts ask that victims file a report while they make things right.

police officer receiving report on phone
Photographee.eu / Shutterstock

The Girl Scouts Council of Suffolk County issued a statement regarding the con, urging those who were targeted to come forward.

"The Girl Scouts Council of Suffolk County was saddened to learn that somebody would use the inherent good will of the Girl Scouts to take money from their neighbors under false pretenses," the statement read, per CBS. "We are working with law enforcement and would encourage anyone who believes they were a victim of this scam to contact the Suffolk County police to file a report."

But not all hope is lost, as the Girl Scouts plan to honor any fraudulent orders, ensuring local residents can get their cookie fix. "Our product sales department will provide cookies to anybody who placed a bogus order, because nothing is more disappointing than not getting your girl scout cookies!" the organization stated.

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