A conman tricked his way into a pensioner’s home by posing as a water board official while his accomplice ransacked upstairs.
He told the 92-year-old victim to remove the contents of a cupboard under the sink to get to the stopcock and then turn the taps on and off repeatedly.
After pretending to carry out checks to the downstairs toilet, the man left the house on Crispin Road, Bradville.
When the elderly woman went upstairs, she found the wardrobe doors and bedroom doors were all open.
Police believe a second offender may have entered the property and conducted a search upstairs while the first offender was distracting the victim at around 7pm on Monday night.
Thames Valley Police is appealing for information to solve the case.
The first offender is white, pale-skinned, 5ft 7ins, in his late forties or early fifties, and was wearing a woolly hat, scarf and a light-coloured jacket.
There is no description of the second offender.
Police did not reveal what was stolen from the property.
Det Con Vince Higgins said: “I would like to appeal for anybody who feels they may have information about this offence as our priority is to arrest the offenders and prevent other similar offences.
“I would also like to highlight that this type of offence is taking place, so that it can alert others to be vigilant.
“When receiving a cold call to your home, it is important that you ask for ID, and try and make secondary checks such as calling the company they are from, if they have not had the appointment agreed in advance.
“No reputable firm will have any objections to having their identity checked, and all reputable companies should be encouraging the practice to make people feel safe and secure in their own homes.”