Video: Man claiming to be council worker steals from Dagenham 86-year-old’s home

The man was captured on CCTV

The man was captured on CCTV - Credit: Archant

A great-grandmother has been left scared in her own home after £150 was stolen from her by a man pretending to be a council worker.

He was driving this silver Ford Focus

He was driving this silver Ford Focus - Credit: Archant

The 86-year-old widow, who is partially sighted, had £150 in cash taken from her house in St Georges Road, Dagenham, at about 1.30pm yesterday.

The balding thief, who was wearing a checked shirt and a blue gilet, claimed to have just finished some maintenance work on a neighbouring property and needed to check her mains supply.

When the victim refused, he brushed past her and rooted around the living room and upstairs, taking £100 of pension money which she had just collected along with a further £50 which she had saved to buy Christmas presents. The thief, who had a strong Cockney accent and was driving a silver Ford Focus which had one hubcap missing, only left when she threatened to call her son-in-law.

The victim’s grandson, Liam Hartley, says his whole family has been left disgusted.

“My nan is frail but everyone knows her and the whole community looks after her so she is quite independent but now she feels vulnerable,” the 26-year-old said.

“I’m gutted that she’s been living there for 62 years without any problems, she’s a proud citizen of Dagenham and someone could take advantage of that so close to Christmas.”

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CCTV footage of the man approaching the house has been shared thousands of times on Facebook since Liam posted it yesterday and he hopes it will help catch the culprit and raise awareness.

A council spokesman reminded residents to be extra vigilant when opening their doors to callers.

“Any council officer will have their identity cards and will be happy to show them to you without being asked,” he added. “If in doubt please contact the council and do not let strangers into your home.”

Police are investigating. Anyone with information should call 101.