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10th Dec 2022

Heartbreaking moment thieves reach into hangbag of woman, 80, to steal her money

Steve Hopkins

The pensioner had just withdrawn money from an ATM when she was targeted

A pair of heartless thieves have been caught on camera stalking an elderly woman through a shop then reaching into her bag to steal her money, weeks before Christmas.

The pensioner, in her 80s, was shopping in Horsham, West Sussex, when one woman appeared to reach into her handbag and swipe cash last week, while another used clothing to shield her from view.

The thief is then seen removing an envelope from the bag and fleeing the store.

The elderly victim was unaware her money was being taken as she was distracted by making a purchase in the shop on East Street.

The pensioner had just withdrawn cash from a nearby bank on South Street when the theft took place just before 11am on Thursday.

A purchase was made using some of the withdrawn money, with the rest put in her bag in an envelope, which she found had been taken once she got home.

CCTV of the theft was released by Sussex Police today on Friday in a bid to catch the thieves.

A spokeswoman for the force said: “The victim was shopping in East Street at around 10.45am on Thursday, December 1, 2022, after withdrawing cash from Santander in nearby South Street.

“A purchase was made using some of the withdrawn money, with the rest being placed into an envelope, which was later discovered to be missing when the victim returned home. A report was subsequently made to police.

“Initial enquiries into the theft have been completed and as a result, officers are keen to locate the two women seen in the CCTV images.”

Anyone with information or footage of the incident is asked to report it to Sussex Police online, or via calling 101, quoting serial 1241 of 01/12.

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