Merseyside Police has issued CCTV images of a woman officers believe may have important information after a theft and a series of attempted thefts at shops across St Helens.
Officers received a number of reports in relation to incidents on Sunday, 15 February which happened at Co-operative Stores on Fleet Lane, Ashtons Greens Drive and Peckers Hill Road, the McDonalds Restaurant and a BP Garage on St Helens Linkway and a Martins general store on Ashtons Green Drive.
During each incident, officers believe a woman went into the shop and asked to buy a low value item. The offender then asked to change a note and tried to confuse members of staff into believing that they had been given more money than they actually had so she could try to obtain too much cash in change.
A theft offence happened at the Fleet Lane Co-op and five attempted thefts happened at the other locations.
Officers believe the same offender also failed to pay for a taxi fare on the same day in Newton-le-Willows.
Officers are continuing to investigate all these incidents and CCTV from the relevant locations has been located and reviewed.
Detective Inspector Paul Unsworth, St Helens CID, said: “We take any crime committed in St Helens extremely seriously and we are continuing to carry out inquiries to bring the person responsible for this series of incidents to justice.
“We believe there may have been a number of similar incidents across St Helens and Knowsley in the last few weeks and I would urge businesses to be on their guard for scams such as this and to contact us if they think they may have been victims.
“I can reassure people we are determined to crackdown on all forms of crime affecting retail businesses and as part of the investigation into these incidents we have issued CCTV images of a woman who we believe may have important information which could help us with our inquiries.
“I would appeal to her, or anyone who recognises her, to get in touch with us as soon as possible.”
People with information can contact officers in St Helens on 0151 777 6065 or via the 101 number quoting reference 0515031046. Calls can also be made to Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.
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