Woman with dementia targeted by distraction thieves in Belle Isle, police say

Suspects use walkie talkies to communicate while inside home

Police say these two people are wanted in connection with a distraction theft in Belle Isle.
Police say these two people are wanted in connection with a distraction theft in Belle Isle.

BELLE ISLE, Fla. – Belle Isle police are looking for a man and woman who they say tricked a woman with dementia in an attempt to steal from her home.

Police became aware of the incident because the woman's son set up a Nest camera inside the home on Nela Avenue and saw the pair inside around 6 p.m. Monday, a news release said.

First, a woman knocked on the front door, and when the victim answered, the woman said she was the nighttime caregiver, according to the report. The two hugged and the woman directed the victim to the kitchen, police said.

Audio from the video shows that the woman asked the victim if she was alone and if she was expecting any company.

While she was with the victim, the woman was using a walkie talkie hidden inside her shirt to communicate with a man who had been waiting outside, according to the report. The man sneaked into the house wearing black gloves while the victim was distracted by the woman, police said.

The man went directly to the bedroom side of the house without announcing his presence. About three minutes later, police said the man returned into the view of the camera empty-handed and left the home and the woman followed about 30 seconds later.

It's unclear if anything was stolen.

The actual nighttime caretaker said she pulled up as the man and the woman were leaving in a white SUV, possibly a 2018 Mazda CX5.

Belle Isle city manager Bob Francis said that the camera could help authorities find the people responsible.

"They look like young despicable people and like I said I hope that if they go to trial they get everything they certainly deserve," Francis said.

Police said they are looking for a white or Hispanic woman who is short with dark hair and a white or Hispanic man with dark hair and a goatee. They are both wanted on burglary charges.

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