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Home security advice following distraction burglary – Heelands

Alert message sent 01/12/2016 16:11:00

Information sent on behalf of Thames Valley Police

Thames Valley Police is warning residents to be on their guard after burglars posed as council workers claiming they needed to cut down trees.
Between around 3pm and 4.05pm on Tuesday (29/11), two men – one of whom was carrying shears – knocked at the address of an elderly resident in Arncliffe Drive, Heelands.
They claimed to be council workers and said they were there to cut down some trees/bushes in the garden as it was blocking light from the neighbours.
The resident invited in the men, one of whom entered the rear garden for approximately 30 minutes while the other stayed inside with her and told her she needed to pay £20 for the work to be carried out.
Shortly afterwards she went out to see that some of the trees/bushes in her garden but, when she returned inside, the other man was no longer there and the other man who had been outside then left through the house. The purse had been stolen, including the £20.
One of the men is white, in his early fifties, with brown thinning hair, was well-built and was wearing workwear.
The other man is white, in his mid-forties, tall, with slim with brown hair.
A Milton Keynes Council spokesman said: “We are not currently carrying out work in this area – it’s not due till next month.
“We would always advise people to double check ID, and if they’re not happy – don’t let them in – and they can always ring our contact centre on 01908 252592 to check.”
Thames Valley Police advises all elderly or vulnerable clients, relatives, friends or neighbours to be on their guard for this type of incident and not to allow anyone into their homes who they do not know.
The following advice is issued:

  • Never open your door to someone you don’t know or are not expecting. Always put your door chain on before opening the door and use your door viewer to see who is there.

  • Most people who call at your home will be genuine, but it’s important to be on your guard and remember there are some callers who will turn up unannounced and have the intention of tricking their way into your property to steal.

  • These people often work in pairs. While one person distracts the homeowner, the other gains entry to your home to steal. Typical scenarios include stories of an emergency gas or water leak.

For more information on protecting yourself against cold callers, please visit the Thames Valley Police website.

Anyone with any information relating to the Heelands burglary can contact Thames Valley Police on 101. If you do not want to speak directly to the police you can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. No personal details are taken, information is not traced or recorded and you will not go to court.


Message sent by
Luigi Straccia (Police, Communications Officer, Thames Valley Police)

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