The UK's fastest-growing regional news network
9°C | 2°C
10°C | 9°C
13°C | 10°C
See the full forecast for your area.
Sponsored by Britelite.
Home Sheerness News Article
A feisty Sheppey pensioner has told how she confronted a self-confessed "scum of the earth" robber who attacked her after breaking into her home.
Rose Overland, 85, was home alone in Leysdown when John Lusher forced his way into her bungalow through a front window after he had twice knocked on the door asking her to sign a petition.
She was subjected to a frightening ordeal in which the crook pushed her onto the sofa, kicked her terrified dog across the room, dragged her through to the bedroom by her arm, smacked her round the face and threw a drawer at her - cracking her ribs.
He also ripped her earrings out, pulled the rings from her fingers and snapped a chain she was wearing round her neck.
But Lusher did not count on his victim being quite as tough as she is when he broke into her Park Avenue home.
"What the bloody hell do you think you're doing...?" - how feisty Rose Overland confronted robber John Lusher
The great grandmother-of-one told how as soon as she saw him climbing in through the window, she demanded: "What the bloody hell do you think you're doing?"
She told him he had come to the wrong house if he wanted money, replied "so do I" when he said he wanted £1,000 and laughed at him when he said pensioners are wealthy.
After the robber - who she described as "ugly" and "stinking to high heaven" - had struck her, Mrs Overland said she told him: "You're a big man hitting an 84-year-old."
Mrs Overland said he was taken aback that she was that age and told her: "You're not 84."
She admitted she was cheeky to Lusher and said although she was nervous, did not let him know.
Mrs Overland, a member of Leysdown over 50s' club, was saved after her husband Derek - known as Bill - returned with their daughter and two grandsons... who accosted Lusher and held him until the police arrived.
"I was lucky," she said. "I think he might have hurt me more if my family hadn't come back.
"My grandsons were brave – I call them my heroes and I think they saved my life.
"It's so quiet round here you don't expect it. I moved from Hackney because of all the robbery."
However, the retired machinist has not been completely unaffected by the trauma.
Mrs Overland said she has lost a stone because she was not eating or sleeping. And she still has nightmares and wakes up in the night as she relives her ordeal.
She also refuses to be at home on her own any more.
But Mrs Overland praised her neighbours and fellow club members, saying she would have been lost without their "brilliant support".
Boozed-up Lusher, 38, was jailed for eight years last week after terrorising Mrs Overland at home.
Click here for more news from Sheerness.
Click here for more news from around the county.