Crime & Policing

Police urge residents to be vigilant following a string of distraction burglaries


Between 1 and 3 August 2016, two men have targeted a number of properties owned by the elderly across North Yorkshire and gained entry in order to steal items such as cash and jewellery.

The distraction technique used by the men is knocking on the door of elderly people and stating that their ball has been kicked into the victims back garden. When the home owner takes one of the men to get the ball, the other man then searches the house and steals property.

  • On 1 August, the locations of those targeted properties were; Lennox Close and Ewden Close, Filey, two properties on Scagglethorpe, Malton and two properties on St Johns Walk, Kirby Hill, Boroughbridge.
  • On 3 August 2016 properties in Scalby Road, Scarborough, Guisborough Road in Great Ayton and Mayfield Road in Whitby were targeted.

Anyone who witnessed anything suspicious in the affected locations on 1 and 3 August, or who has any information, is asked to contact the North Yorkshire police.

Dial 101, press 2 and ask to speak to DC Sam Harding or email

Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.

DC Sam Harding said: “The offenders who are committing these despicable crimes are targeting those who are most vulnerable in our communities, tricking their way into their homes and stealing their valuable property.

“We want to encourage elderly residents across North Yorkshire to be vigilant against this type of crime. Do not let anyone into your home if you are not certain of who they are. If you’re not sure, don’t open the door.

“I would like to reassure residents that North Yorkshire Police and North Yorkshire Trading Standards have a dedicated team who are working together to tackle this type of crime and to protect our vulnerable communities.

“Anyone who thinks they might have been a victim of distraction burglary, or who has strangers at their door acting suspiciously, should report it to the police on 101.

“For information and crime prevention advice, visit the “safer home” section of our website.”

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