Tuesday 15 October 2019

'You just don’t expect it at three in the afternoon' - woman tells of terrifying daylight mugging

Julie Taylor was mugged for her handbag in broad daylight
Julie Taylor was mugged for her handbag in broad daylight

Leona O'Neill

A 54-year-old mother has told of her shock after she was mugged in broad daylight by two youths who stole her handbag.

Julie Taylor said the culprits got away with €207 (£180) worth of cash and sentimental items.

The incident happened at 3pm yesterday in Derry city centre.

Ms Taylor, from Bishop Street in Derry, said: "I was going down Butcher Street. I was crossing the road onto Waterloo Street and I felt a tug on my bag.

"I looked behind me and there was a youth pulling at my bag and another youth with him.

"They both had bubble-style coats on and their hoods up so I couldn't see their faces.

"One of them grabbed my bag from me and he fell."

She said she was left "in total shock".

"I started to scream at the top of my voice that they took my bag and I was in a whole state standing there as they ran away down Fahan Street and into the Bogside," she explained.

"It was three o'clock in the afternoon. You just don't expect that to happen.

"My purse was in my bag, it had £180 in it. I had memorial cards of my mother and my father, who just passed away two years ago, and I had some holy medals that were very dear to me and a few personal things of my own that I would really love to get back."

She added: "It is a disgrace. If it had of been a 70 or 80-year-old woman, they would have just knocked her off her feet. They just wanted the bag and that was it.

"I am really shook up about this. I can't even believe that it happened. It happened so quickly. I am shaking and I am upset.

"I think a big part of that shock is that it happened at 3pm and not at 10pm at night."

Ms Taylor added she feared the muggers could strike again.

"They don't care, they just want the money, or the bag to see what is in it," she said.

"They don't care what way they leave you or what way it affects you. And believe me, it affects you badly.

"You always hear about these things in the bigger cities, but you never expect it to happen to you."

The PSNI is appealing for information.

Police said: "Shortly before 3.10pm it was reported that a female was in the area when two men grabbed her handbag as she was walking through the Waterloo Street area.

"It is believed they made off with a sum of money as well as her handbag during the incident.

"The female was left badly shaken but not injured.

"Enquiries are continuing and we would appeal to anyone who witnessed the incident to contact police on 101 quoting reference number 802 22/2/19.

"Alternatively, information can also be provided to the charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is 100pc anonymous."

Belfast Telegraph

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