Mansfield Police Department

Warning About Distraction Burglaries – 12/23/16

We have noted an increase in distraction burglaries in our area. What is a distraction burglary? It’s when a perpetrator seeks to draw a resident out of their house on a pretext. While the resident is being “distracted”, an accomplice enters the home and takes valuables such as money and jewelry. Another common practice is when an accomplice enters the home from a back or side door while the resident is “distracted” at the front door. Perpetrators use disguises such as utility worker, sales person, contractor, surveyor or a disabled motorist.

 What can you do to protect yourself?

1) Keep all exterior doors secure.

2) Ask for identification to be shown through a window, this can be faked, so contact the utility company to verify the person’s identity. Do not call a number provided by the unknown person.

3) Do not leave jewelry, a wallet or purse out in the open, such as on a front entry table.  

4) Keep valuables in a safe.

5) Know the law. Mansfield Township ordinance prohibits door to door soliciting without a permit issued by the Township. If someone who is soliciting won’t display their permit or if you are unsure if a permit is legitimate, don’t hesitate to contact police to investigate the matter. The non-emergency number for police dispatch is 609-723-8300.