Elderly Eastbourne woman left ‘scared’ after attempted distraction burglary
An elderly woman has spoken out about being a victim of an attempted distraction burglary at her bungalow in Eastbourne and how the ordeal left her ‘scared’ and ‘shaking like a leaf’.
Josephine Hoban, 91, from Lindfield Road in Hampden Park, said a man was banging on her front door at around 6.15pm on February 5 claiming he had lost his injured cat and needed to look in the woman’s home for it.
When the man got inside he demanded money from Mrs Hoban after looking through all her drawers.
Mrs Hoban said, “He was banging on the door and said ‘it’s Phil from the bottom of the street’. He said he lost his grey cat and he needs it because it’s going to be operated on.
“I opened the door to him because I love cats. He came out to the back garden but couldn’t see it. Ten minutes later he came back and said he needed to look again.
“When I went back into the bungalow I saw he had gone through every drawer. He then sat in the kitchen and said I owed him £50 because he cut my hedges a while ago.
“I was scared when he wanted the 50 quid. My cat was absolutely petrified. I told him to go away and that I have not got any money at all. He fled and I was shaking like a leaf.
“When you’re 92 it’s no fun and games. I haven’t slept properly since it happened. I hope he doesn’t come back again, God help him if he does.”
A Sussex Police spokesman said, “Police are aware of an incident in Lindfield Road on Tuesday (February 5) where an elderly woman answered her door shortly before 6.30pm to a man claiming that his grey cat was lost but had possibly gone into her back garden.
“On passing through the house he asked her for £50, he said that she owed him for work previously done in her garden, but she refused.
“She later found drawers and cupboard doors open in the kitchen and living room, but nothing appeared to have gone missing. The visitor was described as a tall white man with a moustache, heavily built and wearing a padded black gilet.
“Officers were concerned that she may have been the victim of an attempted distraction burglary and gave advice concerning her safety and security.”