Halton Regional Police Service
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Media Release

Release Date: June 18th, 2019 - 1:04pm

Originator: D/Constable, Derek Gray, 3 District Criminal Investigations Bureau, 905-825-4747 ext 2344

Contact: D/Constable, Derek Gray, 3 District Criminal Investigations Bureau, 905-825-4747 extension 2344

Location: Burlington

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Police Look to Identify Suspects In Burlington Distraction Theft

The Halton Regional Police Service is looking to warn the public about an increase in the number of shoulder surfing/ distraction-style thefts in Halton and to seek the public's assistance to identify two suspects (please see attached photos and descriptions).

On May 20, 2019, an 87 year old victim was shopping at a garden center in Burlington. Two suspects were in line behind the victim where they managed to observe his personal identification number. After following the victim to the parking lot, they engaged him in conversation about dropping some cash while at the store. The female suspect then put the "found" money into the victim's wallet and walked away with the male suspect. The victim returned home later discovered the missing financial cards and contacted police. The suspects immediately used the financial cards in Hamilton, Halton and Peel Region to make cash advances and retail purchases. The loss is estimated to be $3,300.

Suspect One: Male, olive complexion, late 30's to early 40's, 5'4 to 5'6, medium build, 160 to 170 lbs, black beard, wearing blue jeans, tan coat, black shirt with logo, black baseball cap.

Suspect Two: Female, White, mid to late 30's, 5'4 to 5'5, thin build, 120 to 130 lbs, long hair up in a ponytail with dark roots, blonde tips, wearing a blue jacket, tan baseball cap, blue jeans, white cross body strap purse.

If you are able to identify the above two suspects or have any other information please contact Detective Constable Derek Gray of the Burlington Criminal Investigations Bureau - Seniors Liaison Team at 905-825-4747 ext. 2344.

Tips can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers "See Something? Hear Something? Know Something? Contact Crime Stoppers" at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or through the web at www.haltoncrimestoppers.ca.

Police are reminding the public to make efforts to protect their (PIN) Personal Identification Number for their financial cards when making payments at merchants and using Automated Teller Machines.

Several different suspects have been approaching victim's in retail parking lots and using some method of distraction theft to engage the victim in conversation such as:  "returning money the victim allegedly dropped, or looking for the hospital or some vehicle mechanical issue". The suspects then either pick pocket the victim's financial cards or steal their wallets from their vehicles while the victim is distracted. When the theft is completed, the suspects then have the victim's financial cards with the matching Personal Identification Number and proceed to go on a shopping spree with the victim's financial cards.

Please be reminded that all persons charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.‚Äč