An 89-year-old woman was punched in the face and had money stolen from her handbag by a thief who forced his way into her Dunstable home.
The attack happened at around 5.30pm on Thursday when a man knocked on the front door of the victim’s home in Gorham Way.
He made an excuse to enter the property and then barged past the woman and made his way into the front room. She told him to leave, but he refused, grabbed the pensioner, pushed her onto the sofa and then punched her in the face.
The intruder then removed cash from the victim’s handbag and fled from the house.
He was of Asian appearance, about 6ft tall and wore a pink or mauve jumper.
Det Con Tracey Joyce, who is investigating the incident, is keen to hear from anyone else who may have been approached by the thief or may have seen him in the area before or after the crime.
If you have information, contact Det Con Joyce, in confidence, on 01582 394086, the non-emergency 101 number, or text information to 07786 200011.
Alternatively contact independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111, or online at crimestoppers-uk.org.
Bedfordshire Police are also reminding residents not to allow unexpected visitors into their homes and follow these tips:
> Always use a door chain or spy-hole to check who is calling before you open the door. Shut and lock the back door before you open the front as these offenders often work in pairs.
> All police officers, immigration officials and utility staff carry ID cards. Make them show the card, and then use the number in the phone book to call the relevant company and check that they are a genuine member of staff. Make sure they wait outside while you do this.
> Always stay with the caller while they are in your home. You should be suspicious if they want to look round on their own.
> Never show anyone where you keep valuables. Do not keep large amounts of money in the house – even if you think it is well hidden.
> If you are at all suspicious of the caller, DO NOT LET THEM IN. Lock the door and call the police.