An important message from CAPS and the Chicago Police Department:

 16th District Community Alert

We need your help to protect your friends and neighbors!

            Recently senior citizens have been the victims of thefts and attempted thefts by individuals posing as tradesmen, city employees or utility workers.           These individuals are very convincing and often work in groups of two or more.  Common among all these incidents is that one person diverts the victim’s attention while others enter the home and steal valuables. 

            After identifying themselves as a city worker or gas company employee, they state they have to enter the house to conduct a test on the water or gas.             They may escort the elderly victim to the kitchen or bathroom leaving the front door open for accomplices to gain entry and commit the theft. 

            Often victims won’t realize that a theft has occurred until they discover items missing or their bedrooms ransacked. 

 

Prevention Tips:

Ø  Alert your elderly neighbors and relatives of these scams.

Ø  Do not keep large amounts of cash in your residence.

Ø  Remind everyone to keep their doors locked.

Ø  Be suspicious when approached by someone who states they work for a utility, the city, or a construction crew.

Ø  Do not open the door.  Announce to these individuals that you are calling 911.  The police will check out their credentials.

Ø  Never accompany the stranger to the rear yard or the side of the house.

Ø  Neighbors should keep an eye out for each other.  If you see workers arriving at an elderly neighbors residence call 911.

 

 

Try to obtain identifying information on suspicious persons and their vehicle.  Many times these offenders travel in work vans, pick-up trucks and SUVs as well as passenger cars

 

Criminals seek the path of least resistance and that is why they target the elderly.  Let’s make their job harder by alerting our elderly neighbors and keeping an eye out for them.