Police are appealing for the public’s help to catch a thief posing as a Big Issue salesman.
The man has been visiting businesses in York, Ripon and Harrogate, since the beginning of April this year, claiming to be selling the magazine. He has entered premises, including estate agents and hairdressers, where he placed a bundle of Big Issues on the counter and offered to sell copies. After he has left the premises the thefts of mobile phones have been discovered.
The thief is described as being male, 5ft 7in tall with a small build. He has short black hair and was unshaven at the time of the offences. It is believed he may be of Asian origin and speaks in broken English.
Jim Allen, an investigator in the Crime Management Unit at York, said: “It is not believed that the man who is committing these thefts is an official Big Issue salesperson as he does not show any identification or wear the correct uniform. Additionally, The Big Issue is sold on the street and salespeople do not enter businesses to sell the magazine.”
“If this man enters your shop please contact North Yorkshire Police immediately.
“We would also like to hear from any other victims or anyone who may have been approached by the man and ask them to come forward as soon as possible.”
If you can help with this investigation or can identify the man responsible please contact the Crime Management Unit at York on 0845 60 60 24 7 quoting reference number 12110079715. Or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.