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Home   Maidstone   News   Article

Officers warn people to be vigilant after two purse thefts in shops in Sevenoaks High Street

10 March 2014
by Kent Messenger reporter



Shoppers out in Sevenoaks are being warned to be vigilant after two separate incidents of purse thefts.

In one, a 77-year-old woman had her purse, containing cash, stamps and gift vouchers, taken as she shopped in M&Co in the High Street.

She told police she was bumped into by another woman, who is described as having a dark complexion, and in her 50s. Although she moved away, she came into contact with her again.

After she left, she realised her handbag was unzipped and found an attempt had already been made to withdraw money from her account.

A 68-year-old woman was in the British Heart Foundation shop on the same day and found her bag was unzipped and her purse was gone.

The victim remembers two women standing close to her as at the time. They were described as white, of Eastern European appearance, aged in their 20s and with long curly dark hair.

The incidents both happened on Monday, March 3, between 11.30am and noon.

Police on patrol. Library image

Police are warning against distraction thefts

Sevenoaks Inspector Karen Festing said: "These offences are a reminder that you can never be too careful when out shopping, or even visiting a pub or restaurant. Unfortunately Sevenoaks is not immune to being targeted by opportunist thieves, the likes of who often prey on the elderly. 

"Handbags should always be zipped up or fastened shut and kept to the front of you where they can be seen. Anything containing valuables should never be left unattended on top of a pram, shopping trolley or a mobility scooter. We would also like to remind people that by using a purse chain or lanyard it is also possible to prevent purse dipping incidents such as these."

Anyone with information should call 01322 422518, quoting references YY/4469/14 and YY/4508/14, or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.


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