Great grandmother mugged at cash point in Elm Park

Maureen Plunkett was robbed at an atm in Elm Park on Thursday.
So many people came to help her aft

Maureen Plunkett was robbed at an atm in Elm Park on Thursday. So many people came to help her after the man got away and she is very very grateful and wants to say thank you to everyone. - Credit: Archant

A great grandmother was left shaken and angry after she was mugged for her debit card in Elm Park last week.

Maureen Plunkett, of Mungo Park Road, South Hornchurch, had popped to the cash machine at Natwest in Elm Park Avenue when she was robbed.

“I put my card in the machine and did my code with my hand over the keypad,” she explained.

“I had a feeling a man was behind me and he stepped forward, distracted me with a bit of paper and then pressed cancel and got my card.

“I knew exactly what he had done as soon as he did it – I’m 79, not stupid.”


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The man, who worked with a partner, ran off along the road and got away in a car just before 11am.

One kind stranger who heard Mrs Plunkett’s cries, gave chase but only managed to get a partial number plate.

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“I was like a fishwife,” said Mrs Plunkett, who has six children, 10 grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

“My family could’ve heard me in Hornchurch – I was screaming ‘come back here you b*****d!’”

Passers-by and local business owners all came to Mrs Plunkett’s rescue after the incident and police and the ambulance service were called.

“There were so many faces, I don’t know who to thank, the public were absolutely brilliant,” said Mrs Plunkett.

“Everyone was really nice to me and they made sure I was OK and then my family came to visit when I got home.”

Despite not being hurt by the man she was left very shaken by the whole ordeal.

She spent the following day keeping busy and concentrating on housework to get her mind off the mugging but her “heart wasn’t in it”.

“I didn’t sleep well after it happened,” Mrs Plunkett explained.

“I kept going over it in my mind and thinking of things I could have done to stop him.”

She normally walks with a stick and always leans it up against the wall when she is at a cash point.

“I wish I had it in my hand,” she told the Recorder.

“I knew what was happening straight away and I could have thrown it at him or done something else to stop him.”

Mrs Plunkett, thanking everyone who helped her last week, added: “It just goes to show Joe Public have still got it.”

The police have yet to arrest anyone for the robbery and inquiries are still ongoing.

Anyone with information about the incident should call Havering Police on 101.

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