A brave pensioner who was woken by would-be thieves creeping into his home today told how he scared them off.
The criminals stole keys from the man’s car and used them to get inside his house in Aberdeen’s Deeside Crescent.
It was one of a number housebreakings and sneak-in thefts that took place in the West End community over the weekend and now police are appealing for information to catch the criminals.
The 74-year-old retired security manager, who asked not to be named, was in bed with his wife, 75, when he was woken by a noise downstairs.
The fearless OAP leapt out of bed and headed down to confront the cowardly culprits – who fled before he could reach them.
The man, who has been suffering from bronchitis as well as heart problems, said he was woken around 3.30am on Saturday by his car alarm and got up to turn it off.
He said: “At 6.05am I heard the front door and I thought we’re getting our paper delivered and I thought that’s awful early.
“I got up and just went straight downstairs without thinking and found the door open about 18 inches.
“I just opened the front door and looked out and here’s two of them, I reckon teenagers in dark clothing, going hell for leather down through the garden.
“I just caught them in time. I think they were just in the front door and I disturbed them and they turned and fled.
“I just didn’t like the idea of strangers in my house. I wanted them out.”
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The man said it later transpired the thieves had taken a spare house key from his car.
He added: “It’s scary. When I came back after watching them running down the road my heart was going ‘boom, boom, boom, boom, boom’.
“I’ve had a triple bypass as well so it wasn’t too nice.”
The housebreakings and sneak-in thefts took place on Deeside Gardens and Deeside Crescent between 3.30am and 4.45am on Saturday and also North Deeside Road between 12.35am and 6am yesterday.
Police said the stolen property, including electrical and personal items, had a value of £1,700.
Detective Sergeant Scott McKay, of Aberdeen CID, said: “We know on each occasion that those responsible were disturbed by the occupants of the addresses. Did you see anyone running in these areas at the time?
“I would also appeal for anyone with CCTV, including doorbell cameras or vehicle dashcams, to come forward and contact police.”
Anyone with information can contact Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident 1141 of December 28, or anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.