Police Offer Tips to Avoid Becoming Victim of Burglaries Committed by Fake Utility Workers; Seek Victims of Crime

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The Long Beach Police Department, once again, is alerting residents about recent reports of persons falsely representing themselves as utility workers, as a ruse to commit burglary.

In this scam, the phony “employees” work as a team to distract the occupant and burglarize the home. Typically, the suspects set their sights on the senior community. Victims of this type of crime are encouraged to call Long Beach Police Dispatch at 9-1-1 or (562) 435-6711, to file a report.

Tips to identify a legitimate utility worker include:

  • Utility employees are identifiable by their uniform and are required, upon request, to show an official identification card
  • Customer contact is made either in person by a uniformed employee or through a form that is left in a prominent location on the property – The form provides a contact number to inquire about the work scheduled or to reschedule the work at a more convenient time
  • If in doubt, residents are encouraged to call the appropriate department or company to verify the legitimacy of the employee:

Long Beach Gas and Oil – (562) 570-2140 – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Long Beach Water Department – (562) 570-2300 – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

Southern California Edison Customer Service – (800) 655-4555

Corix Utilities (water & gas meter readers) – (562) 424-4223

Download a useful tip sheet, suitable for posting, here. Community members are encouraged to share this information with relatives, neighbors, and friends.

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