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Bogus caller warning after 83-year-old woman targeted in Selby


6:15pm 1st May 2012
(Updated 12:12pm 3rd May 2012)

Police are warning people to be on their guard against cold callers after a man tricked his way into the home of an 83 year old Selby woman.

Police were called just after 2pm today (Tuesday 1st May 2012) to reports that a man had called at the woman’s home in Parkin Avenue, claiming to be from the ‘water board’ and wanted to check her water pressure.

He asked the  woman to turn on the bathroom tap and stay there to check for vibrations.

A short time later, the woman went to find the man and discovered he had left the house and taken an amount of cash from her purse.

Two other similar incidents were reported in the same road on the same afternoon, but thankfully the man was refused entry by the householders on both occasions.

The man is described as in his 20s, around 5ft 3in and was wearing a woolly hat.

PC Cheryl Power of Selby police, said:

“Targeting elderly people in this way is one the most deplorable and cowardly crimes we have to deal with. Elderly people are often very trusting and these criminals prey on this, taking advantage of their polite and trusting nature.

“I urge residents not to allow anyone into their home who they are not expecting or are unsure who they are. Relatives, friends and neighbours can also play their part by convincing elderly people that it is not impolite to refuse entry to anyone who you are not expecting. Remember – if you are not sure who is at your door, please do not open it.”

PC Power added: “I urge anyone who was in the area of Parkin Avenue and witnessed any of these incidents, or saw anyone matching the suspect’s description, to please contact the police straight away.  

“If you see anyone suspicious at an elderly person’s door please ask them why they are there. If you are threatened or your suspicions are raised, please call the police immediately on 999.”

Selby police are carrying out house-to-house enquiries and reassurance patrols in the area.

Anyone with any information about the incidents or the suspect is asked to call North Yorkshire Police on 101, select option 2 and ask for Cheryl Power by name.

Or, you can give information anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

For more information and crime prevention advice in relation to bogus officials and cold-callers, please go to the North Yorkshire Police website:  



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