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13 August 2016, 10:08
A robber who climbed into a woman’s car when she stopped at traffic lights in Gillingham has been jailed for three years and four months.
Simon Boswell, 34, of Winchester Way, Gillingham, stole his victim’s handbag and also took a man’s wallet in a separate attack days later.
Maidstone Crown Court heard how on Monday, 2nd May, Boswell had opened the door of a car that had stopped at traffic lights on Chatham Hill, Gillingham, at the junction with Rock Avenue.
He grabbed the driver’s handbag and tried to wrestle it away from her, and then climbed into the vehicle when the lights turned green and she began to drive away.
The woman pulled over a short distance away and shouted at Boswell to take the handbag and get out. He jumped out with the bag, which contained a tablet computer, a purse and various other items.
Later that week Boswell followed a customer out of a petrol station on Nelson Road, Gillingham, and attempted to snatch his wallet on the forecourt.
He then made off with £40 cash following a brief struggle that left the victim requiring hospital treatment for cuts and bruises.
Boswell was identified through CCTV footage of the incident and arrested at his home address three days later.
He was the linked to the previous robbery on Chatham Hill through DNA evidence left in the victim’s car.
Investigating officer Detective Constable Ian Mather said: "Simon Boswell is an opportunistic thief who needs no invitation to take items that do not belong to him.
"He does not discriminate against his victims and is equally at home robbing a man on a petrol forecourt as he is climbing into a woman’s car while she is driving alone at night.
"Boswell clearly poses a risk to members of the public and is better off behind bars where he can cause no further harm.
"I would like to take this opportunity to remind motorists to be mindful of their surroundings at all times and take whatever precautions are necessary to prevent them becoming a victim of crime. By taking simple measures such as keeping doors locked and valuables out of sight, you can significantly reduce the chances of being targeted by would-be thieves like Boswell."