Police warning about distraction burglaries in Mansfield and Ashfield

Police are urging householders to be aware of two people suspected of carrying out distraction burglaries in the Mansfield and Ashfield area.

It is believed a man and a woman are going to properties occupied by elderly residents, claiming to be there to carry out gardening work or to inspect drains.

Detectives appealed for information yesterday (Wednesday) after a couple in Cowpes Close, in Sutton, discovered they had a quantity of cash stolen after they were visited by a man and woman who told them they were coming to fix their drains at around 4.15pm on 17th July.

A new appeal has been made after jewellery and a handbag containing a small amount of cash were stolen from the house of an 87-year-old woman in Hammerwater Drive, in Warsop. She had been visited by a man and woman claiming to be there to carry out gardening work yesterday morning (Wednesday).

Today (Thursday), police received a report of another possible distraction burglary attempt at Fell Wilson Close in Warsop on Wednesday. On that occasion a woman called at a house and asked if the resident if she could inspect the drains at the back of the house.

However, the woman was challenged by a neighbour and she left the scene in a dark-coloured car.

The woman is described as white, in her early 20s, around 5ft 2ins-5ft 5ins tall and with short fair hair.

The man is described as white, aged between 25-30, around 5ft 10ins, of stocky build and with dark hair.

Det Insp Hayley Williams said: “These three incidents are all very concerning and there may have been more instances of this couple calling on homes in the area that we have not been made aware of.

“These people have been taking advantage of their victims’ trusting nature by falsely claiming to be there to help them.

“We know that our initial appeal for information has had some effect as it was someone who had heard about the Sutton incident who challenged the woman when she called at a house in Warsop.

“Even if you turned them away at the door, we still want to hear from you as you may have information that can help us identify and trace these people, who appear to have been targeting elderly and vulnerable residents in the local community in order to steal cash and other items of value, causing great distress to the victims and their families.

”The safety of the local community is of paramount importance to us, so in addition to investigating these incidents and appealing for information, we have also stepped up patrols in the areas where the incidents have been reported to provide reassurance to residents.”

Witnesses or anyone with information should contact Det Con Neil Allsop at Hucknall CID on 101 extension 804 4737 or email him at neil.allsop@nottinghamshire.pnn.police.uk. Alternatively call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.