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Police say burglaries at area hospitals might be related

March 21, 2006|by ERIN CUNNINGHAM

Police in Hagerstown, Frederick County, Md., and Chambersburg, Pa., are investigating a string of burglaries at hospitals and retirement homes that they believe might be connected, police said.

The first reported burglary was in July 2005. The items taken include wallets, checkbooks, credit cards and cash, the Frederick County Sheriff's Office said.

In August 2005, the Chambersburg Police Department investigated the theft of several employees' wallets from Chambersburg Hospital, police said. The wallets were taken from the first and fourth floors.

Police said hospital security video showed a woman walking through the building, including the areas where the thefts occurred. The woman was described as black, heavyset, at least 45 years old, wearing a pastel blouse, black slacks and white sneakers - clothing similar to that worn by the hospital caregivers, police said.

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The woman was walking with a metal cane in her left hand.

That same day, the woman seen in the surveillance tape was seen making purchases at Chambersburg Mall and in Shippensburg, Pa. A younger woman was with her for one of the purchases.

Anyone with information about these burglaries may call Detective Scott Mummert at 717-261-3290.

Police said an investigation revealed similar incidents at facilities in Bucks County, Pa., and Bedford County, Pa.

In November 2005, Hagerstown Police investigated two thefts at Washington County Hospital.

A woman was seen entering a private office at the hospital where a credit card was stolen, police said. The credit card was used at several department stores in Pennsylvania.

In the second incident at the hospital, cash was taken.

Anyone with information about these burglaries may call police at 301-790-3700, ext. 281.

Similar incidents were reported in Anne Arundel County, Md., police said.

The Frederick County Sheriff's Office was investigating burglaries at County Meadows Retirement Community on Quinn Orchard Road in Frederick, police said.

A woman matching the description of the woman suspected in the previous burglaries was seen at the facility. Police said someone entered two unlocked apartments and stole wallets, checkbooks, credit cards and cash.

The residents were not home at the time.

Anyone with information about these burglaries may call Detective Jennifer Fling at 301-360-3916.

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