Appeal after distraction burglaries

POLICE today urged residents to be vigilant following three attempted distractions burglaries on the same day in Ipswich.

POLICE today urged residents to be vigilant following three attempted distractions burglaries on the same day in Ipswich.

The first took place at about 1.30pm on Monday in Woodbridge Road, when a 79-year-old man woke to find his front door open and a man stood in the hallway of his first floor sheltered accommodation flat.

The man claimed he had come to regulate the water, but was eventually asked to leave.

He is described as white, with a tanned complexion, aged around 35, 5ft7ins to 5ft8ins, of medium build, with dark brown hair.

He was wearing a knee-length dark blue jacket with a dark top underneath.

The second incident happened at 1.45pm in St George's Street.

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Two men knocked on the door of a 61-year-old man's sheltered accommodation flat, again claiming they had come to regulate the water.

The victim took one of the visitors into his kitchen while the other waited outside. The first man asked him to empty the cupboard under the sink and while he did this he heard the front door creak and looked up to see the second man in his hallway.

Becoming suspicious he asked the pair to leave.

Both men are described as white but with a tanned complexion, 5ft tall and of stocky build.

One was clean-shaven, had a foreign accent and wore a dark jacket, and the other had stubble and did not speak English.

The last incident took place at around 2.30pm in Woodbridge Road.

A man knocked on the door of an elderly couple's ground floor sheltered accommodation flat, claiming he worked for the water board and needed to check a leak.

The 85-year-old male occupant went with the man to the kitchen while the 81-year-old female resident shut the front door. She then discovered a second man in her bedroom. The pair were told to leave.

Both are described as white with tanned complexions, aged 30 to 40, 5ft9ins with short black hair.

The first man was slim built, spoke good English and was wearing dark clothing. The second man was medium built and did not speak English as well.

Those with information should call Pc Ben Hudson at Ipswich CID on 01473 613500 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.

Detective chief inspector Louisa Pepper said: “Let's make the attempted distraction incidents this week our last. The offenders for these crimes deliberately target the elderly who they know are more trusting as they grew up in a time when doors were left open and crime was low.

“It is unfortunate that we can no longer live like this but it's safe to be suspicious.”

Collette Nicholls from Anglian Water said: “Bogus callers are not always easy to spot and it's important to follow our advice when checking the identity of callers.

“We are doing everything we can to tackle this particularly nasty crime against some of the most vulnerable people in our community.”

If in doubt, people should call the Anglian Water Bogus Callers Line on 0800 145145.

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