OCOEE, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) - Ocoee police officers say a 93-year-old woman was horribly shaken-up after being robbed. They want to make sure no one else falls victim to these criminals. Ocoee police say two criminals were working together to rob the woman in a so-called "distraction scheme."
“Someone will approach the victim, usually an elderly victim, talk to them about doing work around their property, and while they're speaking to them, someone else will go into the house and burglarize the house,” explained Dep. Chief Stephen McCosker, of the Ocoee Police Department.
McCosker said one guy kept the woman talking while another went into her open garage with a bucket and filled it with her purse, cash, and her jewelry - even her wedding band. Police said since March, this is the eleventh case of this happening in Orange County, and these creeps target the elderly.
“They find them easier to distract, sometimes they're harder of hearing or seeing, so it allows for other things to go undetected,” McCosker said.
The victim didn't want to go on speak with the media, but Mary Etta McKenzie and Cletus Stewart know her pain. The couple was robbed the same way in April.
“We fell for it,” McKenzie admitted.
One guy claimed he needed to do yard work next door, and talked to McKenzie outside, while his partner robbed the house - making off with thousands of dollars in jewelry and their important documents. McKenzie says at least they weren't hurt.
“Stabbed, choked, or whatever, killed, so we have that much to be thankful for,” she said.
Police say a telltale sign you're being schemed is that these two guys are staying in touch on phones or walkie-talkies while they're distracting you. Ocoee police say in this case, the getaway car was caught on camera, and they're looking for the burglars.