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Fake utility workers target homeowners

Posted at 10:32 PM, Sep 19, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-20 00:32:43-04

Burglars disguising themselves as utility workers are targeting homeowners around Colorado.

In the last month, thieves using similar tactics have stolen jewelry from people in Arvada, Littleton and Colorado Springs.

"I feel violated," said 87-year-old Ruth Anderson who had her jewelry stolen.

Anderson said she doesn't let just anyone into her house, but in this case the scammer said he needed her help.

"The people that I work for were told not to dig there and they did anyways so I'm kind of in trouble and in an awful hurry would you please let me shut your water off," Anderson said the man told her.

Thinking he was a utility working, she he let him in and took the man outside to where he could shut the water off.

At that point, Anderson said he sat down and began chatting her up for about 15 minutes.

"I look so good for my age, and let me see - what a cute little dog," she said the man told her. "Just buttering me up like mad."

After a while, Anderson asked the man why he wasn't shutting off the water.

"Rushed out and by the time I got to the front door, the car was going down the street," she said.

At the time, Anderson had no idea the man was distracting her while someone else snuck in and cleaned out her jewelry.

"It's still hard for me to think he went up there where my husband was sleeping, in the room where my husband was sleeping," she said.

The thieves took off with her wedding ring and necklace that was given to her by her husband on their 50th wedding anniversary.

"The sentiment there is really something," said Anderson.

Anderson wants to blame herself for letting the man in, but these thieves are good and now just what to say to get inside.

"It could happen to anyone and you have to get that in your head that you're not the only one this has happened to," she said.

On Tuesday, the same thing happened in Littleton. Police said two men came into a house asking to check the water. While those men distracted the homeowner, a third person went after the victim's money and a jewelry box.

Similar burglaries have also been reported in Colorado Springs.

Littleton police are encouraging people to use caution when allowing people into their homes. Anytime someone shows up at your door unannounced, and asks to come inside, check their car, their uniform and even ask for ID to make sure.