Police warning after Royston distraction burglary

POLICE are warning residents to be on the look out for distraction burglars after an elderly woman had jewellery stolen by thieves posing as water board officials.

The incident took place between noon and 1pm on Thursday, November 29, in Mill Road, Royston. The woman in her 70s received a visit from a man who stated that her water was contaminated and needed checking.

While he distracted the woman in her kitchen, a second man entered and searched the property. The pair made off with several items of jewellery.

Hertfordshire Police’s Operation Manhunt team is dedicated to reducing distraction burglary.

Detective Chief Inspector Liz Hanlon, from Operation Manhunt, said: “As the weather gets colder these criminals will tend to use the ‘frozen or burst water pipes’ method to get into a home to steal.

“We know that if you open the door and give these criminals the opportunity to talk to you, they will convince you to let them in. We advise people not to open their door if they are not expecting anyone. If you don’t open the door in the first place, you will not be persuaded into letting them in.

“Look through the window to see who is at your door and if you don’t recognise them and aren’t expecting anyone then don’t open the door. If you are worried or feel intimidated by the caller then dial 999 immediately.

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“I would urge people to identify their relatives, friends and neighbours who may be vulnerable to this crime and pass on this vital safety advice.”

Anyone with information on this crime should contact police on 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111. Advice on preventing distraction burglary can be found on the force website, www.herts.police.uk.