Thursday
October 23, 2014

Alert: New String of Attacks Against Agents

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Alert: New String of Attacks Against Agents

Real estate professionals across the country have been attacked in model homes, during open houses, and in their own offices over the last few weeks.

In Butler County, Ohio, real estate professionals are on alert following two recent burglaries. 

In one incident, a 29-year-old Ryan Homes sales agent was reportedly attacked by two masked men in a model home last Thursday afternoon. According to police, the two men approached the female agent from behind and sprayed her with Mace. The two men allegedly stole the woman’s jewelry and then fled the model home. The agent then ran into the neighborhood calling for help, where a couple and a college student called 911 for her. 

"She was running down the street and she had no shoes or socks on and it was cold so I knew something was up," neighbor Tevin Pitts told WLWT News 5. "Her nose was bleeding and she couldn't see and she kept asking for help."

Police are still looking for the two suspects. 

Ten miles away and a few days prior, a real estate professional was holding an open house in Trenton when the home was burglarized by two men. One of them distracted the agent while the other man stole jewelry and a TV, the agent told police.

“They didn’t seem very suspicious until after you added everything up,” the real estate professional told WLWT News 5. The two men were in their mid- to late 20’s. The men also took the open house sign in sheet. 

Police are investigating whether the two recent incidents in Ohio are connected. 

Meanwhile, in Plymouth Township, Pa., a man was arrested in connection with the robbery of an 84-year-old real estate agent. The agent had buzzed the men into his real estate office building. The men had asked about renting a home but the agent told him it was unavailable. One man then reportedly pulled a gun while the other tied the agent to his desk chair. The men stole money from the agent’s pockets and ripped the phone off his desk before leaving, police reported. The victim was not injured. Police are still searching for the second suspect in the crime.

The National Association of REALTORS® urges its members to stay alert and access the numerous safety tip sheets, webinars, and resources for to help them stay safe during showings, open houses, and in other job-related situations.

Source: “REALTORS(R) on Alert After Two Incidents in Butler County,” WLWT.com (Cincinnati) (Oct. 18, 2013) and “1 Arrested, 1 Sought in Robbery of REALTOR(R), 84, in Plymouth Township,” 6ABC.com (Butler County, Pa.) (Oct. 18, 2013)

Read more: 

Real Estate’s 6 Most Dangerous Everyday Situations
Staying Safe: Tips from NAR on REALTOR® Safety