Looking for money for a bus, pretending to be a nurse or claiming to be a carer - Wisbech one of the targets for spate of distraction burglaries

PUBLISHED: 18:05 08 April 2020 | UPDATED: 20:43 08 April 2020

Worcester Road, Wisbech, where one of two recent distraction burglaries in the town took police. Cambridgeshire police issue a fresh warning Picture; GOOGLE MAPS

Worcester Road, Wisbech, where one of two recent distraction burglaries in the town took police. Cambridgeshire police issue a fresh warning Picture; GOOGLE MAPS

Archant

Two of the five distraction burglaries reported to Cambridgeshire Police in the past fortnight have been in Wisbech – and elderly people the targets.

The spate of such incidents prompted an urgent appeal by police to be even more vigilant to check who you allow into your home.

“It’s despicable that some are using the current health crisis to target already vulnerable people,” said crime reduction officer Amanda Large.

On March 24 a woman fraudulently gained her way into an elderly man’s home in Worcester Road, Wisbech, by using his granddaughter’s name.

She asked for cash for a bus but was stopped by a member of the family who arrived.

On April 3 two women entered a home in Southwell Road, Wisbech, and pretended they were nurses and needed to check the elderly resident’s paperwork.

Once they had left, the victim has realised they had stolen her purse containing bank cards.

On the same day, but this time in Dogsthorpe, a man let himself in with the victim believing he was a carer for her husband. The man’s female accomplice then stole the victim’s purse while he distracted her.

On the same day it is believed the same pair targeted further houses in Dogsthorpe, but were unsuccessful.

Ms Large said: “Distraction burglars use dishonest tactics to gain access to homes, they may pretend to be carers, or offer help to gain their victim’s trust and trick their way into their home to steal money or valuables.

“In light of the current situation we are urging members of the public to be even more wary of letting people into their homes”

She said the victims were mainly elderly or vulnerable people in the community.

“If you have an elderly relative or neighbour who lives alone it is worth talking to them about this type of activity by either giving them a call or sending them a message,” she said.

“This is important advice we are trying to promote to prevent these cowardly offenders from getting into people’s homes.”

Anyone with information regarding these incidents should call police on 101 or visit www.cambs.police.uk/report. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org. Call 999 for live incidents where the distraction burglar is still at the property or is due to return.


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