Trenton officials warn of water scam

March 26, 2008 11:52:30 AM PDT
This week, a man impersonating a Trenton Water Works employee stole an undisclosed amount of cash and jewelry from the home of a Hamilton Township senior citizen after tricking the homeowner into letting the con-man inside.

Police say the phony utility worker wore a shirt with a name tag, and told the victim he needed to check the water pressure at the house.

The swindler instructed the resident to go in the basement and turn the water valve on and off so he could check the water pressure upstairs, but instead, the thief grabbed valuables and then fled.

Similar incidents occurred in Trenton and Ewing back in December, so in light of the recent account, Trenton officials are advising residents to be on the lookout for scammers.

According to Trenton City's website, General Superintendent Joe McIntyre of the Trenton Water and Sewer Utilities advises that City Water Works employees wear green shirts with the City seal over the left pocket.

Also, a bona fide City staff member will display a blue ID, which contains the City seal, a silver holograph, and the name and employee number of the worker. City officials ask residents to call 609-989-3208 if they have any questions about utility work in their area.

Officials also remind residents that measuring water pressure is commonly checked from the outside, and it would be unusual for a worker to need access to the inside of the home.

The thief was described as a 6-foot-2 light-skinned black male, weighing about 200 pounds, clean-shaven with short hair, and wearing a yellow shirt with a name tag on it.

Photos of legitimate Trenton Water and Sewer Utilities uniform patches and identification card can be found at the city's website at www.trentonnj.org.


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