Santa Monica police are looking for two suspects who allegedly burglarized a Santa Monica resident’s home Saturday, January 28th, by tricking and distracting the resident.
Police were called to a residence in the 1700 block of Franklin Street at 1:30 p.m. to investigate a burglary in which the suspects had allegedly used a method of theft involving “tricking and distracting an unsuspecting victim,” police said.
The suspects had allegedly knocked on an elderly resident’s door and said they were with the water company and had to enter to check the residential water pressure, police said.
After the resident opened the door and the suspects entered, one of the suspects immediately went into the kitchen and looked under the sink, while the other suspect was continuously receiving phone calls, police said.
The suspects then left abruptly, saying they would return, police said.
After the suspects left, the resident noticed that money was missing, as well as her bank statement and canceled checks, police allege.
One suspect is described as a Hispanic male, 35 years old, five-feet-five, 130 pounds, clean-shaven and wearing a white T-shirt and jeans, police said.
The other suspect is described as a white male, 22 years old, five-feet-six, 140 pounds, and wearing a white T-shirt, jeans and a gray cap, police said.
The suspects were reportedly talking in an unknown language that was not Spanish, police said. No vehicle was seen.
Police said the method of theft involving “tricking and distracting an unsuspecting victim” occurs when two, three or four suspects select a home for target, usually because an elderly person lives there.
One of the suspects will go to the door and tell the homeowner that he or she is with the gas company or water company and need to check the utility, police said.
One suspect will usually talk to the homeowner and distract him or her while the other suspect(s) go through the house and take jewelry, money and other small items, police said.
The suspects may also ask to use the resident’s phone for an emergency or claim to be a relative of the elderly resident, police said.
Santa Monica Police Chief James Butts encourages all residents to ask for company photo identification from the worker before the worker enters their residence, and to be sure that the worker is driving a company truck.
If the worker does not have identification or refuses to provide the identification, residents are encouraged to call police.
Anyone with information regarding the January 28th incident is asked to call the Santa Monica Police Department at (310) 458-8491.
Callers who wish to remain anonymous may call the We-Tip national hotline at (800) 782-7463 (800-78-CRIME).