PE robber posing as municipal worker cons woman

78-year-old threatened with screwdriver

South African Police Service (SAPS) badge. File picture
South African Police Service (SAPS) badge. File picture
Image: Elvis Ntombela

A 78-year-old Lorraine woman was attacked inside her home after a man, claiming to be a municipal employee wanting access to her water and electricity meters, conned his way in. 

The incident took place at about 10.30am on Wednesday when the attacker, who was armed with a screwdriver, gained entry to the Adel Park complex in Van Eck Street, Lorraine.

Police spokesman Captain Johan Rheeder said the man knocked on the door telling her that he worked for the municipality and wanted to read the meters.

“As she opened the door, he pushed her to the side and grabbed her by the throat. Once inside, the suspect threatened her with a screwdriver. 

“He demanded her cellphone, as well as jewellery and money. The suspect then fled and the woman managed to alert the Lorraine Neighbourhood Watch.”

Lorraine Neighbourhood Watch chairman Peter Graham said several patrollers were at the house within minutes after receiving a panic message for help.

“Before he left, he told her that her phone was rubbish and threw it in the garden," Graham added.

“We have launched an extensive search, but suspect he jumped into a nearby taxi and left the area.”

It remains unknown how the man got into the complex.

Rheeder said residents needed to be cautious, never opening their door or gate for unknown people.

“No matter what they say, rather call the police or your security company to verify their details before letting them into your property.

"There are several criminals pretending to be from various government departments and private companies in an attempt to gain entry to a property,” he said.

A case of robbery is under investigation.