Protecting Against Tele-Scams and Email Scams

After some recent fraud schemes were discovered in Lakeville, the police department shared some tips and best practices to avoid being a victim of a scam.  Below is the information provided by Lakeville PD:

Lakeville Police Department often receives calls with complaints of tele-scams and email scams. These scams use clever tactics to obtain personal information from victims and/or convince victims to transfer money to accounts associated with the scam.

No one is immune. Individual victims, especially the elderly, businesses and non-profits, such as places of worship, have been scammed throughout the past year.

Unfortunately, it’s very difficult to get your money back after you’ve been cheated over the phone or over email. Many of the scams use accounts that trace out of the country. We, as a local police department, don’t have the authority or ability to investigate those situations.

Even worse, some scams steal your identity, creating a litany of issues. On their website, the FBI lists some of the following tips for avoiding scam fraud. For additional information, please visit their website,

• Always verify email addresses. Be sure to thoroughly check the address. If you don’t recognize an email address, don’t respond. Hit delete!

• Always double-check phone numbers. Verify a credit/debit card company’s number by looking at the back of your card. If you don’t have the card, search the company’s website. And remember that the IRS will NEVER call you!

• Obtain a salesperson’s name, business identity, telephone number, street address, mailing address, and business license number before you transact business. Some con artists give out false names, telephone numbers, addresses, and business license numbers. Verify the accuracy of these items

• Before you send money, ask yourself a simple question. “What guarantee do I really have that this solicitor will use my money in the manner we agreed upon?”

• Don’t pay in advance for services. Pay services only after they are delivered.

• Be wary of companies that want to send a messenger to your home to pick up money, claiming it is part of their service to you. In reality, they are taking your money without leaving any trace of who they are or where they can be reached.

• Always take your time making a decision. Legitimate companies won’t pressure you to make a snap decision.

• Don’t pay for a “free prize.” If a caller tells you the payment is for taxes, he or she is violating federal law.

• Be sure to talk over big investments offered by telephone salespeople with a trusted friend, family member, or financial advisor. It’s never rude to wait and think about an offer.

• Never respond to an offer or request you don’t understand thoroughly.

• Never send money or give out personal information such as credit card numbers and expiration dates, bank account numbers, dates of birth, or social security numbers to unfamiliar companies or unknown persons.

• Be aware that your personal information is often brokered to telemarketers through third parties.

• If you have been victimized once, be wary of persons who call offering to help you recover your losses for a fee paid in advance.

If you have information about a fraud, report it to state, local, or federal law enforcement agencies.

Who has the best Christmas display in Lakeville?


Each year, Betty and I drive around Lakeville to find out favorite Christmas displays.

This year, I’d like to find out who people in Lakeville think has the best Christmas display.

Is it you?  Is it your neighbor?

Submit photos of your favorite display by sending me an email at or posting in the comments on Facebook.

I’ll gather submissions for the next week and then put the pictures up for a vote.

Let’s continue to connect


Dear neighbors:

Tonight I’ll attend my first Lakeville City Council meeting since the Election. While I won’t be sworn in until January, I want to hit the ground running.

As I mentioned during the campaign, a top priority of mine was to increase input from citizens. One way I plan on doing that, is to produce a regular newsletter of what’s happening in Lakeville.

If you’re interested in subscribing – you can sign up here:




Thank you!

I sent this letter to the editor of the Sun Thisweek, but it wasn’t printed. I figured I would share it here:


To the editor:

I want to offer my deepest thanks and gratitude to voters in Lakeville. I am honored and humbled at the opportunity to serve you on the Lakeville City Council.

Our community has a bright future and when we work together we will continue to thrive for years to come as we continue to make Lakeville a great place to raise a family, start a business, or retire with the highest standard of living.

I promise to work hard every day for you and will always have an open door. Please feel free to email me at luke [at] lukehellier [dot] org or give me a call at 612-237-2551.

Luke Hellier

Learn more about Luke

Recently, I had the opportunity to respond to three separate candidate questionnaires for the Star Tribune, Pioneer Press, and Sun Thisweek Newspapers. Just click an image below and the link will take you to the candidate guide.  If you have any questions about my responses or positions on issues impacting our city please feel free to email me at luke [at] lukehellier [dot] org.





A little more about Luke

By now, you’ve maybe seen my mail piece for my campaign.  One of my favorite parts of the piece is the map of Lakeville that my wife, Josi, designed.  You can see it below.  It shows some of my favorite things about Lakeville but also a little bit more about me.

Can you identify some of the locations?  I’ll give you a hint. One of the flags represents my first job as a dishwasher at Brackett’s Crossing Country Club.



Vote Early


Between now and election day, you can cast your early by submitting an absentee ballot or voting at Lakeville City Hall.


Here’s also a few important things to do before voting:

Step 1: Make sure you’re registered to vote. You can search the Secretary of State database here.

You can register to vote until October 18.  If you are unable to register by October 18, you are allowed to register on election day at your polling location. You can register online  by clicking here.

Step 2: Find out which precinct you live in to determine your polling location. Enter your address here to confirm your voting location.

Step 3: If you know your precinct, you can click here to find out your polling location on election day.

Step 4: Get informed about the candidates for local office. You can watch recent forums of the candidates here:

Lakeville School Board

Lakeville City Council

Lakeville Mayor

Step 5: Cast your vote and be sure to cast your ballot for Luke Hellier for City Council

‘I already voted.’

While door knocking the last few days, I’ve encountered a similar reaction at the door: ‘I already voted and I voted for you.’  It’s such an honor receive their support but it’s also a surprising reaction to get on October 1 – 36 days before Election Day.

Due to a law change after the 2014 election, voters are now able to cast their ballots at Lakeville City Hall anytime between now and election day. If you’re interested in casting an early vote, you can find out more information at the City of Lakeville website.

Looking for more information on voting?

Find out who represents you

Lakeville polling locations

Online voter registration

Submit a request for an absentee ballot

Please consider voting early and I humbly ask for your vote.