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Police are appealing for witnesses after a 79 year old great-grandmother had £500 snatched from her shopping trolley moments after withdrawing it from the bank.
The incident occurred on Tuesday, November 30.
The woman left the Santander Bank in Hanover Buildings at around 11.30am and then walked across the road where she entered the Primark store through the rear entrance.
Before leaving the bank, she placed the money in an envelope which was then placed into her handbag and then into her trolley which she secured with a bungee cord. After viewing a few items in the store, the woman made her way to the till where she noticed the bungee cord was missing and the money.
Store security staff identified three women on CCTV who followed the lady into the store who they believe to be the suspects, as they surrounded the woman to create a distraction while one of them stole the money.
They are described as:
Aged approx 20-35 years old
All had long dark hair,
And were dressed in dark winter clothing
Investigating Officer PC Donna McKay said:
“This is an awful crime committed against a vulnerable member of our community. The lady was trying to make Christmas a special occasion for her grand children and great-grand children using money she had saved throughout the year. The cruel actions of those responsible have now prevented this and we would urge anyone who is able to provide us with information to contact us.
“I would also like to advise anyone going Christmas shopping when the shops are much busier to take extra care and to be aware of their surroundings at all times. If you withdraw money from a bank or cashpoint, try to assess if you are being watched or followed afterwards and if you are suspicious, contact the police immediately.”
If anyone saw these three women or know who they might be, they should phone Southampton Central police station on 101 or anonymously on the Crimestoppers charity line, 0800 555 111.