Police put on Trickster the musical

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Officers hope a musical will help warn people of the dangers of distraction burglary.

County residents are invited to the free event about distraction burglaries between 10am and midday on Wednesday, April 24, in the Great Hall at the Guildhall, Northampton.

There will be a performance by the Solomon Touring Theatre, called ‘Trickster – the bogus caller musical’.

The musical is based on a true story about a man who was a victim of a distraction burglar.

Those attending will also hear advice from the force’s crime prevention manager and a representative from Northamptonshire County Council Trading Standards.

Burglary reduction lead for the force, Detective Inspector Nick Lyall, said: “Distraction burglary is when an offender tricks their way into your home to commit a burglary.

“The most common form is one person distracting the householder by pretending to be from the ‘water board’ or from a gas or electricity provider, while another person enters their property and searches for cash or other valuables.

“Other methods include pretending to be doing repairs or maintenance work or impersonating figures of authority, such as police officers and social workers.”

Crime prevention manager, Laura Jones, said: “This type of crime can have a profoundly negative effect on victims’ lives and we tend to see an increase in distraction burglaries at this time of the year.

“The event will offer a fun morning for members of the community to enjoy, whilst covering a serious topic.

“Anyone is welcome to come along – we are keen to spread the message as far as we can.

“We particularly encourage people to look out for those who are vulnerable within the community, such as the elderly, who are often a target for this type of crime.

“Those who come along will leave with a greater awareness about how to avoid becoming a victim of a distraction burglary.

“The main message that we want to give to anyone who may be vulnerable to distraction burglary is: if you’re not sure, don’t open the door.”

Inspector Nick Lyall continued: “We know that this is an under-reported crime.

“Victims often feel embarrassed and intimidated and are scared of losing their independence.

“I want to reassure people that the police will do all that they can to support and protect victims who do come forward.”

The county force is continuing to clamp down on distraction burglaries through Operation Guardian.

A man was recently in court for committing a series of distraction burglaries in the Far Cotton, Delapre and Briar Hill area of Northampton.

He received an extended sentenced of ten years.

Anyone who would like to attend the event can call Susan Fetcher on 101, extension 343989, or by emailing susan.fletcher@northants.pnn.police.uk.