POLICE in Suffolk are urging residents to be vigilant against distraction burglars following a spate of incidents across the county yesterday.

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At around 12.30pm yesterday, a man visited a house in Park Road, Sudbury. When the female resident in her 70s answered the door, the man said he needed to read the gas and electricity meter.

When the lady challenged him about this, he left abruptly, getting into a dark coloured, dirty, four-door saloon and leaving in the direction of Waldingfield Road.

A woman was seen in the passenger seat.

The male suspect is described as white, in his late 40s, around 5ft 10ins-6ft, of medium build, clean shaven, with short, dark hair.

He was wearing dark clothing and a puffer jacket.

Between 1.40pm and 1.50pm yesterday, an 84-year-old woman answered a knock at her door in Kirkley Cliff Road in Lowestoft and found two young men who claimed they were taking rubbish away from a neighbouring property and needed to leave a written message for the neighbour.

One of the two then distracted the woman, while the other went upstairs and made a search before being disturbed by the resident and leaving the house.

The only item stolen appears to be a silver upholstery needle – hallmarked and about eight inches long.

Police checked with the neighbour, who knew nothing about anyone taking rubbish away.

The two offenders are described as white, in their late teens to 20s, one around 5ft 7-8ins, of fat build with a chubby round face and short brown hair, and the other of similar height, but of skinny build and wearing a grey hooded top with the hood up.

Between 3.15pm and 3.30pm yesterday, two men visited a house in Whitby Road, Ipswich and asked the female resident to take a parcel for a neighbour.

The lady agreed and the men then entered the property, searched a cupboard and stole cash from within.

One of the men is described as white, around 20-30 years old, around 5ft 9ins, with short, fair hair, of slim build and wearing a dark jacket.

The second is described as a white male, around 6ft, aged 30-40, with short, fair hair, of stocky build and wearing a dark jacket.

Anyone with information about any of the incidents is asked to contact Suffolk Police on 101.

Police are reminding residents to follow four simple steps to avoid becoming a victim of a distraction burglary:

1. LOCK – Keep your front and back doors locked, even when at home.

2. STOP– Before you answer the door, stop and think if you are expecting anyone. Look through the spy-hole or the window to see who it is.

3.CHAIN – If you decide to open the door, put the door chain or bar on first. Keep the chain or bar on while you are talking to the person on the doorstep.

4. CHECK– Check their details and identity before you let them into your home. If it is someone claiming to be an official, ask for and carefully check their identity card.

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