Wiltshire Police remind residents of Marlborough to be vigilant after burglary

Police are appealing for information and urging residents to be vigilant following an incident in Marlborough yesterday.

At approximately 7.15pm, an elderly woman was in bed at her home in Homefields, when she heard a bang and then noticed a man at her bedroom door. The woman questioned the man, and he apologised before running down the stairs and out of the property. The front door had been damaged during the incident.

The man is described as slim, of average height, and possibly aged in his 20s or 30s.

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Earlier the same day, at approximately midday, a man had called at the woman’s house stating that she had a loose roof tile.

The woman told him she had already arranged for repairs to be carried out and the man left. This man is believed to have been driving a lorry which had a low bed with a ladder on top.

PC Teresa Herbert, community coordinator for Wiltshire East, said: “We are in the very early stages of the investigation and we are keeping an open mind as to whether or not these two incidents are linked.

“This was understandably a very frightening experience for this elderly woman who has been left extremely shaken up as a result.

“We would like to reassure the local community that we take reports of this nature extremely seriously and understand that news of crimes like this can be frightening to our elderly community. We are carrying out a thorough investigation including house-to-house enquiries and we will be analysing all CCTV footage from the vicinity that is available to us.

“We are keen to hear from anyone who saw or heard any suspicious activity in the area of Homefields yesterday evening between 6.30pm and 7.30pm. Did you notice any suspicious vehicles or people you do not recognise? Please call 101 with any information, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem.”

By adhering to the following advice, you can reduce your chances of becoming a victim of burglary or bogus callers:

• Always keep your door shut and locked.
• If someone comes to your door and you aren’t expecting a caller it is important that you check who it is by using a spy-hole or look through a window. Do not open the door to anyone you don’t know or are not expecting.
• Official visitors will always arrange an appointment with you beforehand – if no appointment has been made, don’t open the door.
• Do not keep large amounts of cash at home – it is much safer in a bank or building society.
• Always keep purses and wallets hidden away, out of sight.
• Never keep pin numbers with credit or debit cards.
• Never agree to have work carried out by someone who is just passing, or believe such people when they claim that repairs need to be made. If you think work might need to be done get quotes from three companies and ask friends and neighbours for recommendations.
• If you see anything suspicious or think a bogus caller may have called at your door, report it to police immediately by calling 999.

The Wiltshire Bobby Van Trust (WBVT) will visit the elderly victims of these crimes. Bobby Van provides a home security service for elderly, vulnerable and disadvantaged people throughout Wiltshire. The charity operates two Bobby vans that provide mobile workshops for Bobby operators. For more information please go to: http://www.wiltshirebobbyvan.org.uk/