Women targeted in Burnley street robberies: police appeal

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Two women have been targeted in frightening street robberies in Burnley which police say could be linked.

A 53-year-old woman was set upon by hooded teenagers who tried to steal her bag in the Duke Bar area last Sunday.

A young woman in her early 20s was pushed to the floor in a bag snatch attack in the same area just days before.

Police have described both offences as serious and are appealing for witnesses to come forward with information.

The latest incident saw two males attempt to snatch a bag from the 53-year-old as she was walking with a friend on Rylands Street on Sunday at 5-10pm.

The two women were walking towards Briercliffe Road and had just walked past two men sitting on some wooden railings when they heard footsteps behind them.

One of the men then grabbed at the victim’s handbag that she was carrying in the crease of her right arm. Fortunately, despite several attempts, he was unsuccessful and both men ran off onto St Andrew’s Street.

The man who tried to take the bag is described as being Asian with dark coloured skin, aged 17 to 18 years old, about 5ft 8in. to 5ft 10in. tall and slim build. He was wearing a black hooded top and dark coloured bottoms

The second man is also described as being Asian with dark skin, about 17 to 18 years old, of slim build, wearing a dark coloured hooded top and dark bottoms.

Police are continuing to investigate a similar offence which took place at 5-40pm on Wednesday, February 20th when a 22-year-old woman was walking alone at the same location with her handbag over her left shoulder.

She felt her handbag being pulled from behind and was then pushed on her shoulder and fell to the ground.

Her black leather River Island handbag and contents were stolen by the offender who ran off onto St Andrew’s Street with a second man.

The man who stole the handbag was wearing a black waist-length jacket, a black beanie hat and black tracksuit pants.

The second man was wearing a black jacket and dark coloured trousers which looked to be cuffed at the bottom of the legs.

DC Ian McLean, from Pennine CID, said: “These are serious offences and in the latest incident the offender has grabbed at the victim’s handbag with such force that she was pulled into the road and fell to the ground, breaking her glasses in the process.

“I’d urge anyone with information regarding these offences to contact me at Pennine CID on 01282 472142, 101, or to ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.”