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Scammers reported at 2 Westmoreland homes

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Tuesday, Dec. 24, 2013, 9:27 p.m.

Authorities believe two men may be responsible for two scams on Thursday in Westmoreland County in which a man diverted the attention of a homeowner while a second went inside and ransacked the residence.

State police at Kiski said the thieves left with $9,000 from a New Alexandria home.

Trooper Stephen Limani said the incidents occurred about one hour apart, about 3 and 4 p.m., the first in Lower Burrell and the second in New Alexandria.

A Lower Burrell homeowner told police that two men carrying portable radios got out of a white van and claimed to be working for the New Kensington Water Authority.

Police said once the resident was outside the home, the other man entered and searched for valuables. Police said the Lower Burrell homeowner doesn't believe anything was taken.

The second case occurred about 4:11 p.m. at a New Alexandria home and also involved two men traveling in a white van, Limani said.

As one man distracted the elderly homeowner and her daughter, bringing them onto a porch where they discussed cutting nearby trees, a second man entered the home through another door. Police said he stole a red purse containing cash.

Police said the pair then fled in an unknown direction.

Anyone with information is asked to call state police at Kiski at 724-727-3434 or Lower Burrell police at 724-339-4287.

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