Police release sketch of con man

The suspect is described only as a white male with medium brown hair, in his late 20s to early 30s, approximately 5 feet 9 inches tall. He was wearing glasses, a plaid jacket or shirt and had a silver ball piercing underneath his lip. The suspect identified himself as working for CenterPoint Energy.

February 22, 2012 4:07:51 PM PST
Houston police are looking for help to find a man who pretended to be a utility worker in order to steal from unsuspecting victims in two home burglaries.

The suspect is described only as a white male with medium brown hair, in his late 20s to early 30s, approximately 5 feet 9 inches tall. He was wearing glasses, a plaid jacket or shirt and had a silver ball piercing underneath his lip. The suspect identified himself as working for a power company.

Police say at about 4pm on December 20, the suspect knocked on the door of a home in the 7300 block of Gracia and stated he was with CenterPoint Energy and needed to meet the victim, Mr. Teofil Klodzinski, in his back yard to show him where the electrical power lines were going to be re-routed and buried. Klodzinski was accompanied by his wife, both in their late 80s, to the backyard.

The suspect then informed them what work would be done and then asked them to stay outside while he retrieved a part from his truck. The suspect did not return and the Klodzinskis went inside to find that several items, including jewelry, had been stolen from their house. Police say Mr. Klodzinski was so upset that he suffered a fatal heart attack.

At approximately 3:30pm on January 31, the same suspect knocked on a door in the 5300 block of Hialeah, and Eva Motalbano answered. The suspect again stated he worked for the electric company and needed to show her where the lines were going to be re-routed in her backyard.

Motalbano locked her front door and then followed the suspect around the corner to her backyard. The suspect led her to a far corner of her house and began explaining the same information repeatedly. The suspect then stated he needed to get flags from his truck to mark her yard and asked her to wait for him.

After 15 minutes passed and the suspect had not returned, Motalbano walked inside her house and found that someone had burglarized her home, taken jewelry and other valuables and exited through the front door. It is believed the suspect was working with one or two other individuals because entry into the home was made through the back door while the woman was distracted outside.

"It was like going through hell, really. It was worse than my husband's death. They ripped me off of everything. I did not have a document to my name," Motalbano said. "I'd like to gouge his eyes out."

Anyone with information on the identity of the suspect in the composite sketch is urged to contact the HPD Burglary and Theft Division at 713-308-0900 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.