Distraction burglaries in Heathfield - police release efit

Heathfield distraction burglary

Heathfield distraction burglary

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A spate of distraction burglaries in the Heathfield area has prompted Sussex Police to release efits of the suspects.

The three homes belonging to elderly people were targeted just before Christmas.

Heathfield distraction burglary

Heathfield distraction burglary

Detective constable Annie Nash, from Hailsham CID, said the incidents may be linked.

DC Nash said: “Distraction burglary is a despicable crime targeting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities.

“It’s possible that they may be linked, but I don’t believe that the suspects are local to Heathfield.

“If you have any information about these incidents or the suspects please call 101 quoting the reference numbers given.

“These men could be operating anywhere in Sussex. If you’ve seen them or haven’t reported someone calling suspiciously at your home, do please let us know.

“Finally, please look out for elderly relatives, friends and neighbours.

“Distraction criminals are devious and clever at what they do and the whole point of them calling on elderly, vulnerable victims is to target them in order to steal from them.”

On December 16, a couple in Halley Road, Broad Oak, had £600 stolen from them by a man (left in picture) who called claiming payment for a cutting a tree in their garden, which they hadn’t asked for.

The man is described as white, late 30s to early 40s, 6ft, of muscular big build, clean shaven with short dark brown hair. Serial 1039 of 16/12.

At about 12.30pm on December 20, an 83-year-old man dozing in an armchair was awoken by a man who had entered his house in Waldron Thorns, Heathfield.

The man (right in picture) said that he wanted to be paid for fencing work and the victim offered him £20.

The man told him that it was not enough and took several hundred pounds from out of the victim’s wallet.

He is described as white, around 50, 5ft7” to 5ft9”, fairly well built, about 12 stone and with swept back wavy black hair, greying at the sides. He was wearing a smart medium grey three-quarter length coat. Serial 805 of 20/12.

The following day (December 21) a man called at a house in Cherwell Road, Heathfield, and stepped in uninvited.

The householder remembers him doing some gardening work for her in the summer, but it was unsatisfactory.

He had also called on her about two weeks previously, but she told him that she didn’t want any more work done.

On the most recent occasion, he asked to use the toilet and then left after saying that he would call again in the Spring.

Nothing appears to have been stolen and the woman did not hand over any money.

The man is described as white, in his 30s, slim, with short dark hair and ‘attractive’ (on own in picture). Serial 1144 of 21/12.