|Warning - Theft from the Elderly
The Denver Police Department is warning the community about thieves preying on our elderly citizens. Denver police recently had a case in which two Hispanic males posing as electrical workers went to the home of an 82-year old woman. They told her she was due a refund from the electric company, and asked her for a copy of her bill. She let the suspects into her home while she went to retrieve a copy of the bill. One of the suspects looked at the bill and told her she was due a $60.00 refund but they only had a $100.00 bill. They asked her if she had change. The woman retrieved a second folder and gave them change out of that folder. One of the suspects distracted the victim by inquiring about a truck in the victim’s backyard. The victim and one of the suspects walked to the backyard while the other suspect remained in the victims house. The second suspect came out of the house and then both suspects left the property. The woman returned into her home and checked her money folder and realized that all of her money was missing. She immediately called the police.
Don't be afraid to be rude. You are not obligated to open the door for anyone you don't know. Don’t open the door to anyone before you’ve checked who it is – look out of the window or use a spy hole in your door. If you open the door, keep the chain on while you find out who is calling and what they want. If you’re not expecting someone and you don’t know them, don’t let them into your home, no matter what they say to you. If a caller is legitimate they will understand your concerns. If someone claims to be from a company, such as a gas or electricity provider, always double check their identity – see the section below for tips on how to do that properly.
If someone is asking for a favor, such as to use your bathroom, borrow a pen or retrieve a ball, don’t let them in. Instead direct them to a shop, office or public place. It’s only natural to want to help someone, but sadly that’s one of the techniques often used by distraction burglars. If you have any concerns about someone who has called at your door, call police immediately. If you have a chance try to note what they look like and any vehicle they have with them, so police can investigate.