Fake policeman who burgled Chiswick homes jailed

A man who gained entry to vulnerable and elderly people’s homes by pretending to be a police officer has been jailed.

David Kerrigan, 38, was sentenced to nine years and 10 months’ imprisonment at Snarebrook Crown Court on Friday, 26 November. He pleaded guilty to 12 counts of burglary and one count of racially aggravated harassment prior to his sentencing date.

Kerrigan burgled two homes in Chiswick, targeting elderly victims aged between 61 and 96. He wore dark coloured clothes and produced a fake warrant card claiming to be a police officer. He would then tell them a fake story about two people being arrested nearby with stolen property and would ask to go inside to check if any of the items had been stolen from their house.

Once his victims had fallen for the ruse he would scope out the house, looking for things to steal and often brazenly asking them where their cash was stored.

In total, he stole wallets and purses which contained approximately £4000 in cash as well as jewellery and watches. He also stole bank cards which he then used in local shops spending below £35. He was caught on CCTV in the shops using the cards. None of the stolen property was ever recovered.

The burglaries Kerrigan was convicted of took place in Golders Green, N16; Gunnersbury, W4; Chiswick, W4; South Tottenham, N15; East Ham, E6; Kensington, W11; Acton, W3; Leyton, E17; Brent Park, NW10; and Walthamstow, E17.

Image above: David Kerrigan gaining entry to a person’s home, Kerrigan was spotted using stolen cards on CCTV in local shops

Spotting a fake police officer

Detective Sergeant Keith Faris, who led the investigation, said:

“This was a fantastic effort by my team, whose hard work resulted in Kerrigan having no choice but to plead guilty due to the overwhelming evidence they uncovered.

“Kerrigan preyed upon the elderly and vulnerable and abused their trust by posing as a plain clothed police officer to walk away with their hard-earned money and valuables. We will not tolerate this type of offending and we will robustly target and bring to justice those who think they can take advantage of the vulnerable and elderly.

“Once Kerrigan had been caught, he vented his frustration by racially abusing an officer. While police officers appreciate that an unfortunate part of their job is being subject to verbal abuse, racism is never acceptable and we will robustly deal with anyone who racially abuses officers or members of the public.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to remind the public to be vigilant against distraction burglars, who often prey on the elderly and vulnerable.

“Distraction burglars pose as someone with fake ID or a uniform to gain your trust and access your home under a false pretence to steal.

“They could say they need to check your meters, fix plumbing leaks, or virtually any official reason to enter your home – including posing as a police officer.

“Utilise your spyhole or door chain where possible and always remember to ask for an ID badge or paperwork. If you are in doubt, call the official number for the company they say they are from – do not call a number they give you – or [you can] contact the police.”

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

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