Senior Scammed By Thieves Posing As Water Workers

BERWICK – It was as easy as a knock on the door and two thieves made their way into an elderly woman’s home on Washington Street posing as water workers.

Berwick Police say the pair made off with about $1,000 worth of jewelry and cash.

It was a frightening story for Lou Manganaro who lives only a few streets away.

“This neighborhood LaSalle Street, Washington Street, Monroe Street, used to be one of the nicest areas in town,” said Manganaro.

Wendy Calarco stopped by Tuzzi’s Italian Bakery just a few blocks away from the break-in and says she knew the victim rather well.

“She’s a sweet woman and it’s just sad because that’s what we all deal with regardless of where you live,” said Calarco.

Berwick Police say this scam is one that’s popped up at least half a dozen times, but this is the first time the thieves got in.

“For the past several weeks we’ve had reports of two individuals approaching homeowners late in the evening, late in the afternoon, knocking on doors under the guise of being from a utility company,” said Berwick Police Criminal Investigator Gregory Martin.

One of the victim’s family members tells Newswatch 16 that many of the items taken were irreplaceable including an engagement ring.  Now others living along Washington Street are taking precaution to make sure something like this doesn’t happen to them.

“I was nervous about it and concerned and more careful to open my door,” said neighbor Rosemarie.

Rosemarie, 88, lives nearby and says this news upset her.

“Years ago you never heard, you could even leave your doors open.  People would come in and not do anything bad,” said Rosemarie.

Now neighbors in Berwick are warning friends, family and especially senior residents.

“You got to be careful, you’ve got to see ID,” said Manganaro.

Berwick Police are asking anyone with information related to this possible utility worker scam to give them a call at 570-752-3646 or email them at tips@berwick-pa.com.

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