Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Hunt on for street thieves targetting the elderly

Police are appealing for information following three separate street jewellery thefts from the elderly in Lancaster and Preston last month -- which police believe could be linked.
The offences have all involved vulnerable victims being approached whilst they are alone in the street and resulted in the victim’s personal jewellery being stolen.

The offenders have used a distraction technique and draped the victims in cheap imitation jewellery whilst removing the victims' own jewellery. They have then fled the scene with the victims' jewellery leaving the cheap imitations in their place.

The first incident took place in Preston between 2.45pm and 3.45pm on Saturday 9th April when at least four offenders in a car have approached an 82-year-old woman who was walking alone on Tower Lane in Fulwood.

A few days later, on Monday 11th April, police were altered to two separate offences in Skerton.

The first took place at 2.30pm when a 64-year-old Lancaster man was travelling along the pavement on his mobility scooter on Torrisholme Road. Lancaster.

Shortly afterwards, around 2.45pm on Monday 11th April, a 76-year-old Lancaster woman was approached as she walked along the busy Owen Road.

All three offenders are described as being of an Asian or Romanian appearance.

PC Dylan Hrynkow from Lancaster Police said: “This is a despicable crime and many of the victims involved in these crimes have lost jewellery with huge sentimental value. From various witnesses we believe the vehicle involved in the offences maybe an old style 7 series BMW and I would urge anybody with any information that could assist with our investigation to contact police.

“I would also encourage anybody that has been a victim of such a crime that hasn’t reported it to police to come forward."

• Anyone with information should contact police on 08451 25 35 45 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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