GREENWICH TWP. — On Dec. 6, a Swedesboro Road resident allowed a man claiming to be from the “water company” into her home, saying he had to check to see if he could detect an odor of gas in her water line.

The man spent several minutes banging on pipes in the basement,  saying he was looking for blockages in the line, police said. The victim heard him call someone on a cell phone and speak in a foreign language, said police.

The man said he found blockages in her water line and told her a crew would be out on Monday to fix the problem, police said.

After the man left, the woman discovered that someone had rummaged through closets and a filing cabinet in two bedrooms while she’d been in the basement with man, said police.

Several pieces of jewelry valued at $545 were missing.

The man was described as being of Middle Eastern descent, about 5’ 9” tall, medium build, wearing a black jacket and having a radio or cell phone on a lanyard around his neck, said police.

Authorities advise that utility companies will call or advise you by mail well in advance if they plan to send employees to your house. Check for identification. If you have any doubts at all, call 9-1-1 before you open your door and tell the person you’re doing so. If they’re legitimate, they should have no problem waiting for a police officer to confirm their identity.