Police Charity Helps Shrewsbury Burglary Victim Aged 93
They have donated £200 to the pensioner after a bogus "water board" official called at her home saying he needed to come inside to check the water pressure.
He turned the taps on in the kitchen and while the occupier was distracted, a second man has sneaked into the property, stealing more than £400 from her purse.
The theft was discovered shortly after the caller left.
Police Constable Alan Dean, one of the investigating officers, said: "The victim is a widow living alone. Although not injured, she was extremely upset over what happened.
"I applied to the West Mercia Police Community Fund for a contribution to help make up for the money stolen. She had saved the cash for paying the gas and electricity bills and had no savings, relying on her pension to cover bills."
He added: "I'm delighted the fund's trustee agreed to make a donation and the lady appreciated the gesture as an act of kindness. She was very grateful and it brought a smile to her face."
West Mercia's PC Fund is a small charity largely made up of voluntary contributions from officers and staff. It enables small donations to be given to victims of crime where the money can make a real difference.
Distraction burglaries involving bogus callers claiming to be from the "water board", council or another utility company, remain fairly rare in Shropshire. But such offences cause huge distress as criminals usually target the old and vulnerable.
Police advise never to let strangers inside under any circumstances. Callers might say there is a problem with the water or something else to do with the house, but whatever reason given, do not let them in. Tell them to go away and if you are concerned, call the police immediately on 101.
Please note: The victim has not been identified for security reasons as she is considered vulnerable.