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Police Warn of Burglar Targeting Newport's Elderly

The Newport Beach Police Department is urging residents to watch out for thieves posing as water company, construction and city workers.

Police Warn of Burglar Targeting Newport's Elderly

Newport Beach police are warning residents to be wary of suspicious activity after an elderly man in Newport Beach was the victim of a residential burglary.

The incident was reported on Thursday afternoon in the 2500 block of Cliff Dr. Police say an elderly man was approached by an unknown male suspect in his front yard. The suspect told the man there was contaminated water in the neighborhood and he needed to check inside the elderly man's home. According to Newport Beach police Sgt. Mark Hamilton, the victim showed the suspect through the house and later discovered jewelry was missing.

Police recommend the following tips:

  • Distraction burglaries are usually committed during daytime hours and the victims are usually elderly.
  • The suspect will state they are from entities such as the water company, a construction company or the city.Many times, the suspect will say they need to check on water faucets and ask to enter the home, hoping to gain the trust and cooperation of the victim. Once inside, the suspect will distract the victim and take items themselves, or perhaps have an accomplice enter the home to commit the crime.
  • Never let repairmen work unsupervised in your home and always secure your valuables before they arrive.
  • Anytime someone approaches you, or comes to your residence asking to come in or perform work, obtain identification and confirm their identity.
    • Legitimate service workers should be in some form of uniform, have identification, and most likely be driving a clearly marked company vehicle. Unless you placed the service call, do not allow anyone access to your home.
    • If the person is suspicious or uncooperative, immediately call the police at 949-644-3717, or dial 9-1-1.

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