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Ruse Burglaries

Over the past several weeks this agency and surrounding agencies have experienced numerous residential burglaries commonly referred to as distraction or “ruse” burglaries. This style of burglary is unique in the fact that the homeowner is present during the burglary and usually never realizes until hours or days later that a burglary has even occurred. The subjects committing the burglaries target elderly individuals and pose as utility workers, surveyors, landscapers, construction workers, or village representatives. The object is to get the homeowner (s) out of the house and into a secluded area (usually the back yard or even a basement) while a second and/or third subject enter the residence and ransack various rooms looking for cash and jewelry. The whole incident is usually completed within a few minutes and the subjects leave the property in the vehicle they arrived in. The offenders are usually mistaken to be Hispanic as they have a dark complexion and speak in a foreign language. The offenders also try to conceal their identity by wearing sunglasses and/or hats. The persons who commit these types of crimes have many variations of the “ruse” and they are usually very good talkers.

The following is a list of recommended procedures should unknown persons come to your house requesting assistance or asking to complete any type of work that you did not request:

1. Ask for identification when someone comes to your door and call police and have them verify.

2. Don’t leave your house or allow anyone inside your house.

3. Check on your neighbors if you see any suspicious behavior on your street.

4. Attempt to obtain license plate information and a full vehicle description including make, model, and color.

5. Contact the police immediately should become suspicious of any persons/vehicles in the neighborhood.

This bulletin is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact the Investigations Division of the Mundelein Police Department at 847-968-4600.

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