New scam for burglary
By now most of us have heard about being burgled out the front door while working the back yard. Today I learned another one. I was washing dishes with the front door open to the screen letting in the fine fresh spring air. A very scruffy and filthy man and his buddy and equally filthy doggy "out for a walk" came up to tell us our communal trash bin in the back alley was aflame. "Call the fire dept." he said "your trash bin is on fire!" "huh" "out back of your house in the alley, it's on fire! Call the fire department!" So don't most people rush helter skelter out the back for a fire? Sure they do! My husband did. I did too, but not till after I'd locked the front door. The guy was still standing there as I said thanks and locked up and he paused and leaned towards the house a moment or two before leaving as I rushed out the back dialling 911 on the phone.
By then my husband had found the bin, not behind our house but down the alley, the next one down, and it was a single grocery bag of trash smouldering freshly. Barely a smell and no smoke or flames. He'd cleverly brought a snow shovel out with himself and was shovelling snow on the fire to put it out. While waiting for the fire department I thought more about how easily we could have been burgled while dealing with the alley fire and went back and locked the back door too (our fence is locked all around). We deliberated as we waited on the fire department and concluded that there's no way that guy would have noticed the fire unless he was there when it was lit, making him very suspect indeed! What's more, how often do you see decrepit looking guys walking their dog? Really. When I saw him through the window I thought he was a customer looking at the wrong address for a dealer's house, that's how sloppy and rough looking he was. Now I know that plenty of dirty and rough people aren't criminals and it's entirely possible he really was just being a courteous and civil person, but I want everyone out there to remember to lock your front door before going out the back door! Burglary happens. He and his two compatriots could have easily made off with armloads of our belongings while we were waiting innocently in the alley for the fire department! I'm reporting it because I want the police to be aware of this possible scam. I'm writing this story because I want other people to also be aware. It won't work if you lock your doors!