CREATED Jul. 23, 2013
FORT MYERS, Fla.- 'Distracted Burglaries' could becoming a trend in Southwest Florida. Kay Janssen said it was a usual Monday as she worked in the garden of her Fort Myers home Monday afternoon, until a young Hispanic man dressed like a utility worker approached her.
"He says we're going to be trimming the trees in two weeks and I'm checking on everything." Janssen said.
Janssen said she told the man her branches needed a little work and welcomed the help. But then said he wanted to take a look around the other side of the house, far away from her un-locked door.
"(He said) There's some tall trees there maybe we ought to go back. I said, but there's no wires back there.That's all right he said, we can take care of those trees." Janssen said.
Janssen said the man took a phone call during his visit.
" I have no idea his response I put myself out of the picture to give him privacy. I thought this young man looked so sincere and wanted to be helpful and charming." Janssen said.
Janssen said the man left shortly after and she went back to work. Later that night, Janssen said her home had been turned upside down.
"I got in my bedroom and I could tell things were disturbed there. All the drawers were rifled through." Janssen said.
Janssen said her purse, 60 dollars in cash and some sentimental jewelry was gone. Fort Myers Police said this potential scam is more common than you think. Police suggest always locking your door and close garages. Do not accept or talk to people posing to do unsolicited work. If approached, always ask for I.D. If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Kay said she now feels like a stranger in the home she's lived in for decades.
"I feel really violated and disappointed and insecure. I feel very insecure, I used to feel very safe in my home now I feel completely different." Janssen said.
If you notice anything suspicious going on in your neighborhood call police right away.