Heartless thieves target Ballyclare pensioner

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Detectives in Antrim are appealing for witnesses or information following a distraction type burglary in Ballyeaston yesterday.

Detective Constable Montgomery of Antrim and Newtownabbey Reactive and Organised Crime said: “Sometime between 10:40am and 11am on Monday, October 10 a male called to the home of an elderly person claiming to be carrying out work for a neighbour.

“The male told the elderly resident that he needed access to the rear of her property to facilitate this work. Whilst the resident allowed the male access other persons are believed to have entered the victim’s property and have stolen a sum of money.

“This male was aged between 30–40 years old and was approximately six foot in height. He had black hair and wore silver braces on both his top and bottom teeth.

“We are appealing for anyone with information who may have witnessed any suspicious activity in the area or have information about the incident to contact detectives at Antrim PSNI on 101 quoting reference 445 of 10/10/16.

“Or, if someone would prefer to provide information without giving their details they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800 555 111.”

Police would like to take this opportunity to urge everyone to treat with caution any stranger who comes to their door. Bogus callers use many guises, such as working for an electricity company, the water service, a satellite or cable TV provider and even pretend that they have lost a ball or even a cat or dog in your property. Once they have your attention, an accomplice will make an attempt to sneak inside without you noticing so he, or indeed she, can steal things like jewellery, cash, mobile phones and other devices. Whatever they can get their hands on they will try to take and you won’t know what has happened until they are gone.

You can also use the Quickcheck number - 0800 013 22 90 to check if a caller is genuine. The 24-hour freephone service enables householders to challenge and independently verify the identity of anyone calling at their door. The call is free and will be answered by a trained operator. They will take the details of the company, which the caller claims to be visiting on behalf of, then contact the organisation to determine if the caller is genuine. If there is anything suspicious the operator will contact the police directly.