Suspect identified in alleged Eagle subscription scam
Monday, 02 July 2012 12:52

Local resident summoned on theft charges

by Nicole Rodman

    Shirley, a resident of North Point Road, was at home last week when she heard a knock on her door.
    Opening the door, she was greeted by a clean-cut, brown-haired young man, approximately six feet tall.
    As the young man began to explain, he was selling subscriptions to The Baltimore Sun and The Dundalk Eagle for just $39.99.
    Fortunately for Shirley, a regular Eagle reader, she had just read the June 14 cover story, “Scammers sell fake Eagle subscriptions door-to-door.”
    Recalling the description of the alleged scammer as a young, clean-cut, brown-haired man, Shirley quickly became suspicious.
    After the young man left, Shirley picked up the phone and made a call to North Point Police Precinct 12.
    Now, just weeks after the initial Eagle report detailing the alleged subscription scam, police have located a suspect.

    On June 21, Wise Avenue resident Taylor Herbster, 21, received a summons to appear in Baltimore County District Court on one count of petty theft in connection with the alleged sale of fake Eagle subscriptions.
    A graduate of Patapsco High School and Center for the Arts, Herbster allegedly went door-to-door, presenting himself as a student at Patapsco High School in order to sell newspaper subscriptions to unsuspecting residents.
    According to Precinct 12 community outreach liason officer Marianne Snyder, Herbster is a Sun employee who was apparently authorized to sell Sun, but not Eagle, newspapers.
    “It seems that what he is doing is legitimately selling Baltimore Sun subscriptions, but adding The Dundalk Eagle in order to try and make the sale,” she explained last week.
    When reached for comment regarding Herbster’s summons, his supervisor at the Sun, Kelly Moore, did confirm that Herbster is employed with the Sun, though he was unaware of the charges against his employee.
    Herbster has previously been convicted of first-degree burglary in December of 2009 in connection with an April 2009 armed-robbery incident. He received a 10-year suspended sentence as well as five years of supervised probation.
    Later, in November 2009, Herbster was arrested in connection with another robbery incident.
    Found guilty, he received a five-year sentence with all but four months suspended.
    Herbster is scheduled to appear in court on charges of theft less than $100 in connection with his alleged role in the Eagle subscription scam on Sept. 19.
    No other suspects have been located at this time.
    To report any suspicious solicitation activity, including door-to-door sales of The Dundalk Eagle, please contact Baltimore County Police Precinct 12 at 410-887-7337.