05 April 2017
Officers are appealing for witnesses after a man forced his way into the home of an elderly woman in Bournemouth.
The man knocked on the door of the victim, aged in her 80s, in Brackendale Road at around 12pm yesterday, Tuesday 4 April 2017.
He claimed to be from the council and said he was acting on a noise complaint.
The offender forced his way into the home as the victim answered the door and locked the woman in a downstairs toilet before searching the house and stealing items including jewellery and a silver hair brush.
Police were called after the woman was heard shouting from the window by a member of the public and she was released from the toilet.
The offender was described as wearing a baggy suit with a wide-brimmed hat and a full beard, although it is believed the beard may have been fake. He was carrying a briefcase.
Detective Sergeant Ian Allen, of Bournemouth CID, said: “This was an appalling attack on an elderly woman in her own home.
“I would urge anyone who may know who committed this crime to contact police immediately.
“I would also appeal for anyone who saw a man matching the description given in the area at the time of this offence to please contact me.
“I would like to remind people to always check for ID before opening their door to anyone and to contact police if you have any concerns or suspicions about the identity of visitors to your home.”
Members of the public should consider the following advice when answering the door:
LOCKED – Is the back door locked?
STOP – Am I expecting anyone?
CHAIN – Put the chain on BEFORE opening the door.
CHECK – Ask for the caller’s identification. Shut the door leaving the caller on the doorstep and phone the number in the phone book NOT the one on the card they give you, as this could be an accomplice around the corner – especially if it is a mobile number. A genuine caller will be happy to wait while you do this.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email email@example.com or by calling 101, quoting incident number 55170048882. Alternatively, contact the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111 where mobile phone tariffs may apply.
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