As the warm weather approaches, the Baltimore County Police Department is warning residents about criminals who use deception to enter homes and steal property.
The suspects are adept at pretending that they’re someone that they are not. They will approach their victims and claim that they are from organizations such as Baltimore County, the Water Department, or BGE. They will tell the victim that they need to check something such as water pipes, or need to do some type of inspection. In some cases, the suspects have worn clothing that makes them look authentic such as bright yellow traffic vests. In some cases, they even show ID badges. While one suspect distracts the victim, another suspect will enter the home and steal money, jewelry, and other valuables.
Police offer the following tips to prevent deception burglaries:
- Do not allow uninvited repair workers into your home, especially if they want to fix something that you have not noticed is a problem (such as a leaky roof)
- Do not allow anyone to lead you anywhere in your home or on your property. This can leave other areas of the home unprotected so that a thief can access those areas.
- If someone claims to be at your home for an inspection, ask for picture identification and contact their company prior to allowing them into your home.
- Keep doors locked when possible to prevent anyone from entering your home while you are outside the house.
- Call 911 immediately if someone attempts to enter your home or you suspect someone is attempting a deception burglary.
- Watch for people offering services in your community and make sure to write down a description of the individuals and their vehicle, including a tag number.
- Older residents and those living alone are often targeted – keep in contact with your neighbors to ensure that they are not victimized.
- Always research companies before hiring them to ensure that they are legitimate companies with a good reputation.
- Report any suspicious persons, vehicles, or activity to police at once.
Baltimore County Police Burglary Unit detectives are working hard to solve these crimes, but they need the public’s help. Anyone with information on deception burglaries is asked to call police at 410-307-2020.
[Source: Baltimore County Police Department]