Water Company Impostors Steal Thousands from Vernon Home

Another town has been hit by people posing as water company employees and police said the impostors got into the Vernon home of elderly residents and stole several thousands of dollars’ worth of jewelry and cash.

In the Vernon incident, the men posed as Connecticut Water Company employees to get into the home Wednesday night, police said.

The crime happened on the same day another water company, MDC, put out a warning about water company impostors trying to gain access to houses in West Hartford and East Hartford.

Vernon police said they responded to a home on Grove Street just before 5 p.m. Wednesday to take a report of a burglary.

The elderly residents said two men who posed as Connecticut Water Company knocked on the back door and said they were there to do repairs on the plumbing, according to police.

The resident who answered the door let the men into the house and the male resident brought one of the men into the bathroom while the female resident brought the other man into the basement.

Police said they believe another man snuck into the house while the residents were distracted and stole jewelry and cash from dresser drawers.

One resident told police the man she was with talked on a “walkie talkie” like device and police said it could have been to signal the third man.

Neighbors reported seeing a gray or silver SUV or minivan leave the house and head south on Grove Street toward Hartford Turnpike and one neighbor had video surveillance that police said they believe captured the vehicle as it fled.

“Our hearts go out to the residents in Vernon who were victimized by thieves portraying themselves as Connecticut Water employees,” Connecticut Water said in a statement.

One of the men was described as “older,” about 5-feet-7 and 200 pounds. He was wearing black sunglasses, a dark blue jacket, a blue baseball hat, dark blue pants and dark brown sneakers.

There is no description of the other men.

Anyone with information is asked to call Vernon Police at 860-872-9126.

Police are also issuing a reminder for residents to verify the identity of anyone claiming to work for a utility company before letting them into your home, especially when the employee arrives unannounced and you do not have an appointment.

Utility employees carry photo IDs, wear uniforms and drive company vehicles.

Anyone who observes suspicious activity is encouraged to report it to police.

Connecticut Water said it has a customer protection program in place and employees rarely knock on the door without an appointment and never ask for payment during an on-site visit.

The company’s customer protection program e-mails a photo of the employee to the customer in advance of a scheduled appointment so they can have confidence that the person at the door is a real Connecticut Water employee.

They said Connecticut Water employees have company-issued photo IDs, drive vehicles marked with the company logo, wear company uniforms and are happy to provide ID.

Customers can also call 1-800-286-5700 to verify that the person at the door is an employee and the nature of the work they are there to perform.

Connecticut Water also has 8 Tips on Imposter Protection on its website. 

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