Stay alert say police after distraction burglaries

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Derbyshire police have urged people to be vigilant after distraction burglars stole cash from elderly residents in Ilkeston and Ripley.

A large amount of cash and bank books were stolen from a property on Stapleton Road in Ilkeston, between 3.15pm and 3.30pm on January 30,

This comes after three men entered the home of an elderly couple, also in their 90s, to inform them that there was a problem with their water supply.

Whilst one of the men distracted the victim, the others are believed to have searched the home and stole the cash.

Two of the men were described as white, six-foot tall, and aged in their mid-20s. One of the men wore a black hat and spoke with a possible Northern accent, whilst the second one was described as being of stocky build and wore dark clothing.

The third man was of slim build, around 5ft 10ins tall, and aged around 18-years-old. He was described as having a ‘baby face’.

At around 1.30pm on the same day, a man visited the home of a couple in their 90s on Briars Way, Ripley, purporting to be from a water company.

He told the victim that he needed to check their water after a pipe burst on a nearby road and that the property’s water supply may be contaminated. As the man stayed with the homeowner to check the supply, a second man entered the house.

A large amount of cash was later discovered to have gone missing. One of the men was described as white, six-foot tall, of medium build, and aged in his 20s.

The second man was described as being around 5ft 9ins tall and also of medium build, aged in his 20s, with winter clothing on.

Officers are now appealing for information from residents who may have seen men acting suspiciously in those areas. They are also warning members of the public to be aware of the dangers of distraction burglary and to help share the message with elderly family members, neighbours and friends.

A Derbyshire police spokesperson said: “Distraction burglaries such as this can cause a great deal of distress for the victim, who are often elderly and vulnerable, as in these cases.

“We are urging anyone with information, or who may have seen men acting suspiciously in the areas of Stapleton Road in Ilkeston and Briars Way in Ripley, to contact us and help us to bring the offenders to justice.

“We are also warning other members of the public to be aware of the dangers of distraction burglary and to help share the message with elderly family members, neighbours and friends to help to stop further victims.”