TORRANCE (CBS) — Police want residents in Torrance to beware of burglars posing as utility workers.

Torrance police say there’s been an uptick in “distraction burglaries.” Residents, they said, should verify that people claiming to be utility employees are actually who they say they are.

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Most recently, the burglars identify themselves as gas company or water department employees and accompany the resident into a room to test a faucet or a light, then grab valuables from jewelry boxes or wallets.

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Police say residents should follow these tips:

  • If someone comes to your house and you don’t know them or are unsure of their identity, do not open your door.
  • If you do not have an appointment with the company they claim to be representing, do not let them enter until you have confirmed their identity by calling their organization or company.
  • Keep all doors locked when you are at home.
  • If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of their claims, immediately call police.

Anyone with more information about similar burglaries can call Torrance police at (310) 618-5570.

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