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Con artists make off with 94-year-old Greensburg man's $68,000 Christmas savings

Renatta Signorini
| Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2015, 11:15 p.m.

A Greensburg man who had $68,000 in a bedroom drawer earmarked for Christmas presents told city police the money was stolen Thursday by a couple who tricked him into letting them inside his home.

The 94-year-old told police that a man and teenage girl came to his Short Street home on the ruse that they wanted to discuss work on the roof he had replaced in 2011, police Chief Walter Lyons said. The victim noticed the cash was gone about four hours after the pair left his house.

It will be difficult to track down the suspects, Lyons said.

He cautioned residents to be skeptical when they are approached by people without business identification who are offering to do work.

“Do not allow people into your residence, especially on cold calls like this where someone just shows up,” Lyons said.

At about 1 p.m. Thursday, a white male with a dark beard came to the victim's house and said he was the person who replaced his roof after it was damaged by hail in spring 2011, police said. The man said it appeared that some of the shingles he put on the house are lifting up and needed repairs, the victim told police.

The victim told investigators that he believed he recognized the man, whom he let inside his home, along with the girl. The girl stayed inside while the two men went back outside to inspect the roof, Lyons said.

At about 5:30 p.m., the victim noticed the money he kept in a bank envelope in a dresser drawer was missing, police said.

“He had been taking the money out of the bank to give to his kids for Christmas,” Lyons said.

The male suspect is described as about 5 feet 10 inches tall with a medium build. The dark-haired female appeared to be about 15 or 16, police said. Neither wore clothing that had markings of a business, police said. The pair drove in a truck that had no business identification.

Anyone with information is asked to call Greensburg police at 724-834-3800.

Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or rsignorini@tribweb.com.

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