The public are warned to be on the lookout for thieves posing as Irish Water staff, following a deception at the weekend when a 60-year-old Portarlington woman became the victim of a robbery after allowing a hoax caller into her house.
On Saturday, April 26, a woman in the Derrymore area received a caller to her door claiming to be an employee of Irish Water. He told the woman he was carrying out a test for lime in the water and after filling up a glass and studying it, he asked the woman to go to her bathroom and fill a glass from the tap. While she was gone from the room the man removed a quantity of cash from her purse.
A garda spokesperson has revealed that the man was aged between 40 and 45, and had thick black cropped hair. He is described as being sallow skinned and of foreign extraction, although he spoke good English and was polite to the woman. He was dressed in a navy bomber jacket and was “a bit unkempt looking”, the spokesperson said.
The gardaí are advising everyone to be wary of allowing strangers into their home without proper identification. If anyone witnessed the individual involved in this crime they are asked to call the garda station on 05786 74100.
The gardaí are also warning people to keep their premises secured, especially in rural areas, following the theft of €600 of diesel from a farmyard in Clonenagh, Mountrath, on Tuesday, April 22. The advice is for farmers to ensure their sheds are locked, and for homeowners to make sure their home heating tanks are properly secured.
In other crime news locally, two drug arrests were made in Portlaoise within the past week.
On Friday, April 25, a Limerick woman was detected trying to bring cannabis resin into the Midlands Prison.
The garda spokesperson has revealed that there is no value estimated on the drugs yet.
And during a stop and search operation on the Mountrath Road in Portlaoise on Sunday, April 27, a man in his early 20s from the Portlaoise area was detected with cocaine.
The drug was for his own use and he was charged with unlawful possession.