Vigilance warning following burglaries

15/05/2017 13:59:49

Police are urging residents to be vigilant and to look out for elderly relatives and neighbours following a spate of distraction burglaries in Cambridge.

Most of the burglaries have involved criminals claiming to be either police officers or Neighbourhood Watch members.

The burglaries, which are believed to be linked, happened on Saturday (May 13) in Emery Street and Russell Court, yesterday in New Street and at about 6am today (May 15) in James Street.

After making the false claim the offender pushes past the victim. In today's incident, the burglar assaulted the victim and pushed them to the ground before stealing some money.

On other occasions, a handbag and bag were stolen and in one incident nothing was taken.

Community Safety Officer Kate Thwaites said: "If you have an elderly relative or neighbour who lives alone it's worth talking to them about this type of burglary.

"There is important advice we are trying to get over to prevent these cowardly offenders from getting into people's homes."

To reduce the risk of becoming the victim of a distraction burglar, always remember:

LOCK - Is your back door locked? If not, lock it before you answer the front door as distraction burglars often work in pairs - one distracts, while the other steals

STOP - Are you expecting anybody?

CHAIN - Put this on before you open the door. If you have not got one, it is a worthwhile investment. It will give you that extra 'safe space' and barrier between you and the caller and then,

CHECK - Ask for their identification card, take it and look at it carefully. Close the door and check the number in the phone book - not the number on the card. If they are genuine they will not mind waiting or coming back another day.

Anyone with any information should call the police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.

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