Just because someone knocks on your door and says they’re an employee of the water authority or on official-sounding business, doesn’t mean they are.
That’s a message Lower Saucon Township Police are now trying to reinforce, after they say a resident fell victim to what is being described as a “water department ruse” that ended in a distraction burglary in the township.
According to a post published on the department’s Crimewatch site, the ruse was deployed on a resident of the 1800 block of Waldheim Road shortly before 4 p.m. Tuesday.
Police said the resident reported that a “clean cut” white man came to the door and said “there was an issue with the water supply down the road and (they) needed to check the water.”
The resident initially denied the man access, but he said he was going to return with a supervisor, and after he came back with another clean cut white man they were both allowed inside the home, according to police.
The men went into the kitchen where they ran water from the tap and then one of them said he needed to run the water in the bathroom, police said.
It was only after the men had left that the resident realized that cash in an envelope on a dresser was missing, and contacted the police.
The men were wearing plain clothes and didn’t display any badges or identification to the resident, police said.
No other identifying features or information was provided.
Police are advising residents to be wary of anyone who says they are from a water authority, gas company, power company or the like who comes to the door unannounced.
Criminals who commit distraction burglaries may work alone or in teams, they said, and they often target the elderly.
Anyone who has someone come to the door and feels something may not be right should call the company the person says they are representing for verification, as well as ask to see official identification. The police should also be contacted if something appears suspicious. The Lower Saucon Township Police Department can be reached by calling 610-317-6110 or 610-759-2200.
Residents with questions can contact the Hellertown Borough Authority at 610-838-8051 or the Lower Saucon Authority at 610-317-3212.