A local con-women who tricked a vulnerable lady out of almost £2,000 was caught and jailed thanks to a West Midlands Police and members of the public partnership.
On the 11th May, Levi Galeford from Browning Tower in Overbury Road, Northfield, started a conversation in the QE Hospital car park with a 66-year-old lady from West Heath who was visiting her husband. Unemployed Galeford, 24, managed to get the lady to part with £10.
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The following day, hoping to get more, Galeford orchestrated another ‘chance’ meeting with the pensioner at the hospital where she again initiated conversation. During this encounter, the calculated offender fabricated claims of being in a violent relationship and needing money to break free. Her lies persuaded the Good Samaritan to part with £320 and exchange phone numbers.
After success in deceiving the pensioner, Galeford arranged to meet the victim on a further six occasions over several weeks to take advantage of the lady’s generosity with unfounded sob stories – this enabled her to swindle almost £1,790 in cash.
Identified by public
On 7th June, Galeford chaperoned the victim to a building society where she had her hand over £500. West Midlands Police obtained CCTV footage of Galeford from this visit and, following an appeal, members of the public identified her as the offender.
In the meantime, Galeford committed several other crimes which she was also charged with after her arrest on 24th September. These included:
- Distraction burglary – Galeford targeted an 81 year old woman in Northfield on 11th September. She claimed to be a victim of domestic abuse and asked for change for the bus. When the woman turned her back, Galeford snatched her purse from the hallway, using the bank cards six times in the space of 15 minutes to buy cigarettes, petrol and food.
- Robbery – Galeford grabbed £50 in cash from a cashier’s till at Boots in Middlemore Road, West Heath, on 14th September
- Attempted robbery – Galeford was caught on CCTV (below), attempting to snatch a handbag from a 62-year-old woman in the Co-Op store in Turves Green, Northfield on the 15th September.
Following her arrest, Galeford went on to admit fraud by false representation, a distraction burglary on an 81-year-old woman, another count of fraud, robbery and attempted robbery.
She was jailed for six years at Birmingham Crown Court on Wednesday 15th November.
Investigating officer, Detective Constable Gareth Beard from the force’s High Harm & Vulnerability Team, said: “There was no truth to Galeford’s emotional stories; they were invented with the sole purpose of tricking money out of this lady.
“She took advantage of the woman’s vulnerabilities and good nature…she pretty much used her as a cash machine whenever she wanted money.
“We had a fantastic response from our appeal for information and I’d like to thank everyone that took the time to get in touch. We’ve ensured that Galeford has been taken away from society for several years and no longer poses a danger.”