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Seniors targeted in west-end break-ins

File photo of a Toronto police cruiser. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Lars Hagberg

Senior citizens are being targeted in a string of break-and-enters in the city’s west end, Toronto police say.

The ten reported break-ins took place between early June and Sept. 22, in the area bounded by Jane Street to Keele Street and from Lawrence Avenue to Highway 401.

The perpetrators, a man and a woman, allegedly broke into the homes while the residents were tending to their backyard gardens.

Police say in each case money and jewellery were taken.

The victims have all been women at least 70 years of age and of European descent.

Det.-Sgt. Colin Greenaway said it is believed seniors are targeted because it gives the criminals an advantage.

“I think it’s easier for them to get away and if they are confronted, which they have been in some of these cases.” Greenaway explained. “They can make good their escape much easier than someone who’d be much younger.”

Police say the suspects have been seen by some victims and other witnesses.

The man has been described as white with a dark-olive complexion, between 45 and 55 years of age, with a heavy build. He spoke with a slight accent.

The woman is described as white with an olive complexion, 50-years-old, between five-foot-one-inch tall and five-foot-five-inch tall, with a heavy build, long dark hair and a hawk-shaped nose.

Greenaway also noted that there is a similarity between the description of the suspects and those wanted in connection with a series of distraction thefts that took place in the area last year which also targeted elderly victims.