UPDATE: Police say cable man not connected to crime

Posted at 5:35 PM, Apr 16, 2013
and last updated 2013-04-17 11:50:29-04

PETERSBURG, Va. (WTVR) – Petersburg police now say a local cable company employee is NOT connected to a recent home burglary.  In an email Wednesday morning, police spokeswoman Esther Hyatt wrote investigators determined the man was not connected to the crime after an “exhaustive investigation.”

On Tuesday evening, Petersburg police emailed local media with a warning about a man selling cable in the area. Police said the man “provided a card with name [name redacted by] and was seen driving a champagne colored Mercedes.”

Police said a home the cable man visited was broken into the day after the visit.

“The coincidence is too much to ignore,” police wrote in an email on Tuesday. Again, on Wednesday police provided an update to say there was NO connection between the cable company employee and the crime.

Here is the original press release from Petersburg Police. 

“There was a man claiming to work for Comcast /Xfinity in the Ramblewood Neighborhood in Petersburg on Thursday, April 11, 2013 selling alarm systems with cameras, as well as an upgrade on cable service. The salesman practically barged into the house behind another resident.  This man was described as a light skinned black male around 6 feet tall with a thin build. He provided a card with name [name redacted by] and was seen driving a champagne colored Mercedes.

The man said he needed an immediate answer to the upgrade, and he needed the resident’s credit card number.

Asking for credit card numbers and the need for an immediate answer by the resident are both red flags.  By demanding a quick answer, it does not allow the resident to research the legitimacy of the salesperson, which should always be scrutinized. The salesman even called someone to set up the cable upgrade, but wouldn’t allow the resident to talk to the person he was speaking with, claiming that he alone had to give the credit card number to the person on the other end of the line.

The man had a Comcast promo catalog with but the name on the promo was scratched off.

The resident unfortunately suffered a break in the next day on Friday, April 12, 2013.  One television was stolen, but the thief had limited time due to the alarm. The coincidence is too much to ignore.

This same person may be doing the same thing throughout the neighborhood.  Please contact the Police Department at 732-4222 if contact is made with this party or any other suspicious activity. DO NOT let any strangers into your home and contact Police so we can identify this man and confirm his credentials if he does work for the company.

Attempts are being made to contact Comcast about the individual to determine if they had any sales persons in the area.”