Police probe after 'appalling' distraction burglary in Royton

Date published: 03 April 2020

An investigation has been launched after a 92-year-old woman’s home was ransacked in a Coronavirus distraction burglary.

At around 7:30pm yesterday (Thursday), police were called to reports of a burglary on Grasmere Road in Royton.

Officers attended and established that a 92-year-old woman had been burgled in her own home.

Two offenders - both men dressed in all black - knocked on the victim’s door and falsely explained that the woman’s neighbour had died of Coronavirus.

In light of this, they offered to clean her house for her and presented themselves as a friendly, helping hand.

However, whilst the woman was fetching the men some cleaning products, the two offenders stole a number of items from the victim’s house.

These belongings included a purse, money and jewellery.

One offender is described as having an olive-skin complexion.

The other is described as wearing a bobble hat.

The elderly woman wasn’t physically injured, but has been left understandably distraught by the incident.

Chief Inspector Trevor Harrison, of GMP’s Oldham district, said: “This is an absolutely appalling crime, which has taken advantage of a vulnerable and elderly woman at a time where we, as a society, should be looking out for her.

"This is the lowest of the low.

“I would make a direct appeal to anyone who was in the local area around the time of the incident to please get in touch with us at the earliest opportunity.

"Sometimes, even the smallest detail can progress our investigation and help us bring those responsible to justice.

“Officers will continue to support the 92-year-old woman at this upsetting time and I want to stress that we are treating this as an absolute priority.

"I know the public will support us in this.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 8922, quoting incident number 2104 of 02/04/20.

Reports can also be made anonymously, via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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