An elderly Leyland man is in hospital after a gang of four rogue traders attacked him in his own home.Advertisement
One man was arrested on suspicion of aggravated burglary at the scene in Balshaw Crescent yesterday morning (Friday 22 January), followed later by three other arrests in the Blackburn area.
Chief Inspector Chris Abbott from the Chorley and South Ribble Neighbourhood Policing Team said: “Unfortunately, at around 8am, the address of a man in his eighties was visited by four men purporting to be workmen wanting to carry out work on his property.
“When he declined their offer and closed the door, they went round the back of his house, smashing their way through a window.
“At this stage we don’t know how many of the group made their way in, but we do know that they searched inside and sadly, the elderly man was hit to the head with a metal bar. He has been taken to hospital to be treated and is in a stable condition.”
Read more: Storm Christoph causes flooding on the rail line between Leyland and Bolton
A second incident, believed to be linked to the same group, happened at around 9.05am in Eaves Lane, Chorley.
A man knocked at the door of a property and forced his way inside, saying that the victim owed him money. The victim went to a nearby shop and withdrew cash, handing it over to the suspect.
Chief Inspector Abbott described the attacks as ‘appalling’.
“To have targeted these elderly, vulnerable people in their homes, where they should feel and be most safe, is truly appalling and especially callous.
“We know that at the moment, the elderly and vulnerable are home more and so are easy targets for criminals. Please check in with people like this that you know so they are not completely isolated.”
Chief Inspector Abbott said the incidents are being treated extremely seriously.
“I appreciate that these incidents will have caused concern in the community and so I would like to reassure people that we have extra officers in Leyland and Chorley, close to where these crimes took place, for anyone with information or concerns to come and speak to us.”
Advice on staying safe from doorstep crime is available on the Lancashire Constabulary website.
If you have any information about the incidents, either approach an officer or ring 101 quoting incident reference 223 of 22 January (Leyland aggravated burglary) or 315 of 22 January (Chorley incident).
Read more: Latest news and updates from Blog Preston