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Munster police warn of several distraction theft reports in town
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Munster police warn of several distraction theft reports in town

STOCK Police - Munster

A Munster police vehicle.

MUNSTER — After several calls of reported distraction scams, police caution Munster residents to be on the alert. 

Since early June, the Munster Police Department has received numerous calls of suspects carrying out schemes to catch residents off guard. 

During the incidents, people have reported that male suspects come to their doors and claim to be from the municipal water department, utility workers or town officials.

Join Tristan DeFord, Jami Rieck, and Nancy Zakutanksky on a shift working for Superior Ambulance in Merrillville.

The suspects tell victims they either need to check the home's water system due to recent weather issues or that they have to do work in the resident's backyard. 

While the victim is distracted in one part of their home or yard, a second suspect then enters to steal their belongings. During one incident, a woman locked the suspect out of her home after she started to feel suspicious. Police reported there have been no injuries during these incidences. 

The suspects typically target senior citizens and wear hard hats, reflective vests and false IDs to appear legitimate. they also have been known to carry radios they use to communicate with their accomplice during the scam.  

Authorities cautioned residents to keep exterior doors and garage doors closed and locked at all times, and to only speak to unknown visitors through windows. 

Those who notice potentially criminal activity are asked to call 911 immediately, especially if approached by suspicious people.  

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Night Crime/Breaking News Reporter

Anna Ortiz is the breaking news/crime reporter for The Times, covering crime, politics, courts and investigative news. She is a graduate of Ball State University with a major in journalism and minor in anthropology. 219-933-4194, anna.ortiz@nwi.com

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