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Woman, 81, victim of theft

PUBLISHED: 18:51 12 March 2010 | UPDATED: 16:44 06 July 2010

A CALLOUS conman has struck at the home of a Lowestoft pensioner, stealing the 81-year-old woman's handbag.

Police investigations were this week continuing into the distraction burglary at the woman's home in Caddies Walk about 3.

A CALLOUS conman has struck at the home of a Lowestoft pensioner, stealing the 81-year-old woman's handbag.

Police investigations were this week continuing into the distraction burglary at the woman's home in Caddies Walk about 3.30pm on Saturday.

Officers are linking this incident to another walk-in burglary in Caddies Walk, between between 11am and 1pm on Saturday, when a purse was stolen.

Police need to trace a white man, in his mid 20s to mid 30s, around 5ft 10in to 6ft, of slim build, with short fair hair and wearing a light coloured jacket with a white stripe down the arm.

A man offering window cleaning services called at a number of properties in the area on Saturday.

The 81-year-old's black handbag, containing a small amount of cash and her pension book, was taken.

In the other walk-in burglary a 44-year-old woman lost a black purse containing a small amount of cash.

It was revealed this week that more than 140 elderly people had been burgled by doorstep conmen in Suffolk over the past two years, and a national campaign has been launched to raise awareness of the crime.

Cliff Horne, chairman of the Suffolk Pensioners' Association, hit out at those who target the elderly and infirm.

“The whole thing is despicable,” he said. “It is terrible as they prey on vulnerable older people. Many pensioners are slightly more trusting, which is why they target them.”

Suffolk police urged householders to chain their doors and check callers' credentials before letting them into their home.

Insp Chris Gilmore, a crime reduction officer with Suffolk Police, said: “The number of distraction burglaries reported in Suffolk has risen slightly over the past two years.

“Distraction burglars do not usually break in or use force of threats, rather they take advantage of a victim's vulnerability or good nature.”

Information about the Lowestoft incidents should be directed to Lowestoft CID on 01986 835300.

Anyone concerned about suspicious callers in their area should report them to Suffolk Police on 01473 613500 or dial 999 if a crime is in progress.

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