The incident, reported in Hayward, is one of three incidents in as many days that scammers tricked their way into homes to check for reptiles. Earlier burglaries took place in Union City and Fremont, police said.
Officers were called about 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 22 to a home in the 2200 block of Bennington Lane after a woman reported her home had been burglarized, said Hayward police Sgt. Mark Ormsby.
The victim told police that a suspect posing as a Hayward Animal Control Officer came to her home wearing a green uniform and said he needed to check her backyard for snake eggs. While the victim was in the backyard with the suspect, a second suspect entered the home and stole property. Police did not say what was taken or how much it was worth.
Officers described the suspect who posed as a city worker as a white man, 25-35 years old, 5 feet, 6 inches tall and 160 pounds with thinning, dirty-blond hair and mustache. He wore rectangular glasses.
Just one day before, a woman impersonating a city employee duped two elderly Union City residents into entering their home to investigate a snake infestation, while police say an accomplice burglarized their home.
The two roommates told police that while the thieves were inside, cash, jewelry and other items were taken from their home in the 32200 block of Deborah Drive.
The suspect in that case wore a uniform comprised by a dark blue hat with a "CITY" logo on it, a dark green shirt with the same logo over the left chest area and dark green pants. The victims described her as a white or Hispanic female with blonde hair that may have been dyed or possibly even a wig.
Then on Aug. 24, the scam slithered its way into Fremont after residents reported a woman dressed as an animal control employee going door to door looking for a poisonous snake on the loose.
Police said a home was burglarized on Moore Drive in the Cherry-Guardino area and a similar snake story was reported by homeowners in the Hillview-Montecito area of Niles. One of the suspects is described as white or Hispanic, about 5 feet tall, with a medium to heavy build and a pierced tongue. She was wearing a hat, dark colored gloves and a tan short-sleeved shirt with patches on the sleeves. She may be driving a silver Land Rover, police said.
Authorities are asking anyone with information about the scams to call police at 510-790-6900, 510- 293-7034 or 510-675-5247.
Staff writer David DeBolt contributed to this report. Contact Natalie Neysa Alund at 510-293-2469. Follow her at Twitter.com/nataliealund.