Bartlett police warn of increase in ruse burglaries
Bartlett police are warning the public of an increase in ruse burglaries, including recent instances involving people posing as landscaping contractors or utility workers.
Police said ruse burglaries occur when a homeowner is distracted by one individual who either asks for permission to check on something inside a house or in its backyard, while another enters the residence to steal valuable items such as money or jewelry.
On Sept. 20, a ruse burglary was reported on Snow Drift Court involving four men, police said. One said he was doing landscaping work and then walked to the backyard with the victim. While the victim was distracted, three other suspects entered the residence and stole cash and other items. The suspects left the area in a black colored Town and Country minivan.
On Sept. 29, two attempted ruse burglaries occurred on Waltham Lane, police said.
Police said a man claimed he was doing yardwork and asked a resident to follow him outside. When the resident refused, the suspect attempted a similar burglary at a neighboring home, police said.
On Oct. 22, a ruse burglary occurred on Balsam Lane involving a male suspect who claimed he was doing tree work at a neighbor's residence, police said. He asked the victim to follow him to the backyard of her residence so he could show her the work that needed to be done. While the victim was distracted, another man entered the home and stole several items of jewelry.
All three cases remain under investigation, and police do not believe the same suspects were involved.
Police say residents should call 9-1-1 to report any suspicious activities and deter these types of crimes from occurring. Residents should not allow anyone in their home unless they know them personally or have a scheduled appointment, and never leave doors unlocked or a garage door open if you choose to speak with a contractor or a utility worker.