Ilford 89-year-old widow had wedding necklace stolen in audacious distraction theft

An 89 year old grandmother was mugged outside of her house in Ilford. Pictured with her grandson.

An 89 year old grandmother was mugged outside of her house in Ilford. Pictured with her grandson. - Credit: Archant

An 89-year-old widow was left distraught after two teenage girls stole a necklace she was given on her wedding day, right outside her home.

The pensioner, who has undergone a triple heart bypass, was retuning from a evening out at the bingo last week with her grandson.

While he parked the car just after 9pm, in Brockenhurst Gardens, Ilford, she waited on the pavement and was approached by the two teens.

“One girl started waving at me and I through she was trying to help me park,” said grandson Keith Mercer. “The other girl hugged my nan and snapped the necklace off her neck.”

The plucky pensioner pushed the girl away and they ran down the road.

Keith, 33, called the police and bravely gave chase but was stopped by two men who he believes were working with the thieves.

“The men physically stopped me by putting their arms in front of me,” he said. “The girls pulled up their tops to try and distract me, they had rolls and rolls of fat, and then ran away round the corner – it was all very strange.”

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The police were “very helpful” and arrived quickly on the scene to look for the girls. The grandmother was shaken up by the ordeal and is now reluctant to leave the house.

“I am just so angry, I was only one step behind them,” said Keith.

“They completely disappeared, they must of hidden somewhere locally as there was nowhere else for them to go.”

Keith called on any residents of Eton Road and other neighbouring streets with CCTV to come forward.

“The fact that they could do this to an 89-year-old women is disgusting. My nan has had a triple heart bypass and has nearly died twice . She is a fighter but it has knocked her a bit.”

He also warned residents to be vigilant for “distraction muggings” and is hoping someone might recognise the necklace which has significant sentimental value.

“It is a very distinctive necklace, a chunky thing that she has worn for years,” Keith added.

No arrests have been made and inquiries continue. Anyone with information should call 101.