Posted on 27th April 2016
Police are reminding people to take extra care with their home security and to not open the door to anyone who calls at their home unexpectedly.
The advice follows a number of suspicious incidents in Codnor, where a woman is alleged to have tried to trick her way into the homes of a number of elderly residents on Highfields during the evening of Saturday, April 23.
A 27-year-old woman has been arrested and charged with five offences of fraud by false representation in connection with these alleged incidents. Faye Parkin, of Jessop Street, Codnor, was due to appear before magistrates at Chesterfield Justice Centre this morning (Wednesday, April 27).
PC Neil Hopwell of the local Safer Neighbourhood policing team has been carrying out enquiries and is hoping the advice will help prevent any bogus caller or rogue trader type incidents from taking place.
He said: “We often find that older or more vulnerable residents are more at risk of becoming a victim of crimes where an offender will call at a home unexpectedly and give some reason or excuse to get inside.
“Methods do vary, but excuses can include anything from claiming to be some kind of official, collecting for charity, that they need help in some way or need to use the toilet. Once inside they may try to distract their victim while they, or an accomplice, searches for money.”
Officers will be visiting homes in the area to offer advice to residents about how to stay safe. Some of the tips include:
- Make sure you can see who is at the door before you answer it and don’t feel pressured to open it. If you’re not sure, don’t open the door.
- Genuine callers and officials won’t mind waiting while you check their credentials. Don’t use telephone numbers on ID cards, call a number from a telephone directory or bill or alternatively make a list of your important numbers and keep them near the phone.
- Set up passwords with your gas, electricity or water companies – genuine callers will need to recite this password to you.
- Look out for those who are vulnerable within your family or neighbourhood and report anything suspicious to the police.
PC Hopwell added: “The best advice is really to not open the door to anyone you are not sure of. I would also urge people to look out for any elderly relatives, friends or neighbours by checking their home is as secure as possible and sharing this important advice.”
More advice and information is available about how to protect yourself from doorstep crime on the Derbyshire police website by clicking here