Elderly targeted in spate of burglaries in Hertfordshire

A SPATE of distraction burglaries has prompted police to issue safety advice and urge people to be extra vigilant. There have been 13 incidents across Herts since September, all targeting elderly people. The locations include Hitchin and Aston. Detectives

A SPATE of distraction burglaries has prompted police to issue safety advice and urge people to be extra vigilant.

There have been 13 incidents across Herts since September, all targeting elderly people. The locations include Hitchin and Aston.

Detectives from Operation Manhunt, which is dedicated to catching distraction burglars, believe the incidents may be linked due to the method used by the offenders and a vehicle seen at some of the burglaries.

In the majority of the cases, the offenders have got into the property by claiming to be from the water board.


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Three offenders are believed to be involved and they are described as white men. One is thought to be aged in his 40s or 50s, and the two younger men are in their late teens or early 20s, one with fair hair and the other with dark hair. It is believed the offenders may be using a red car with a roof rack.

The victims have mostly been in their late 70s and 80s.

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Detective Inspector Dave Wheatley, from Operation Manhunt, said: "I would reassure people that we are thoroughly investigating these distraction burglaries and are providing full support to the victims of these despicable crimes.

"I would like to appeal to people to be extra vigilant and look out for people matching the descriptions given, as well as the distinctive car which may be used. I would ask anyone who believes they witness anyone matching these descriptions, acting suspiciously to call police immediately."

He added: "I would like to take this opportunity to remind people never to open the door to a caller who they are not expecting, and if they do get a suspicious call to contact police immediately. We find that elderly people are targeted by distraction burglars and would ask people to send this message to their elderly friends or relatives."

Anyone with information is asked to call police on the non-emergency number 0845 33 00 222 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

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