Beware of burglars posing as utility workers; alert seniors

Crime Alert from David Tilley of the Plano Police Department:

Recently, there have been some reported “distraction” type burglaries taking place in our city. Most of the victims targeted have been elderly so I want to get this out to each of you and ask that you be aware and pass along the information to others who you think could be victimized by this technique.

This is how it works: Distraction burglary is a crime in which elderly persons are often the targets. The perpetrator seeks to draw a resident out of the house on a pretext. While the resident is occupied, an accomplice enters the home and picks up valuables such as money and jewelry. Thieves may also pick up papers with the intent of committing identity theft.

In a variation, the accomplice enters the dwelling by a second door while the resident is occupied at the other door. This type of burglary is also known as ruse burglary, imposter burglary, and diversion burglary.

Here is an example of recent ones we have had reported: Suspects make contact with victim. Suspect No. 1 advises he works for a company and they need to look at something in the yard. Our cases were reported as being represented as a TXU worker needing to look at trees while the other was Oncor. While Suspect No. 1 distracts the homeowner by talking to them, Suspect No. 2 enters into the home and commits the burglary.

The suspects in each of our cases were described as Hispanic males and the vehicle was a light colored sedan.

Be careful and again, pass this along to your elderly friends and neighbors.

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