Police hunt launched after 78-year-old woman injured in Doncaster street robbery

Police have launched an investigation after a 78-year-old woman was injured in a Doncaster street robbery.

By Darren Burke
Monday, 11th April 2022, 1:02 pm

Charity worker Eileen Harrington suffered facial injuries when she tackled two men attempting to steal her bike from near the Civic Offices in Waterdale last month.

South Yorkshire Police are now searching for the pair who fled empty handed.

A spokesman said: “We can confirm an investigation has been launched following the attempted robbery of a 78-year-old woman in Doncaster town centre.

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“It is reported that at around 7.40pm on 29 March, the victim was walking back to her bike, which had been left in the bike rack outside the civic offices on Waterdale.

“As she approached, she saw two men attempting to steal the bike using cutters. As the victim intervened, she was struck on her jaw.

“The offenders fled empty-handed.”

Enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information can contact South Yorkshire Police on 101 quoting investigation number 14/63393/22.

Last week, Mrs Harrington, who founded Doncaster dementia charity Donmentia, said she had been left “badly shaken” after being swiped across the face by one of the men using a tool as she left a meeting at the Doncaster Council HQ.

She said: “It shouldn’t happen to people like me, I’m one of life’s good guys.

“I was with another of the trustees doing good deeds, he went down to his car and I went to get my bike.

“There were two of them bending down at my bike, I knew it was mine because my hat, gloves and helmet fell out the basket.

“I confronted them and shouted at them to ask what they were doing with my bike and he just carried on cutting before pulling the bike free leaving me with the chain in my hand.”

Despite being around a foot shorter, the 78-year-old explained she was prepared to fight the man to get her bike back but fortunately, did not need to.

“I got hit over the head during it, I was swiped across my temple with his cutting tool,” she said.

“I think at that moment, I would’ve hit him with the chain, but for whatever reason he half attempted to ride away.

“He was nearly 6 feet tall and I’m 5 feet tall and an old lady and he just dropped it and moved onto the next bike.”

Ms Harrington, who said the robbers didn’t scare her, refuses to be put off by the incident and remains committed as ever to her charity work.

“I wasn’t scared, I was angry, I was mad – I have been burgled and broken into so many times I’m nearly blasé about it all.

“I’ve had to face up to people before, men in particular, who try to put me down and I won’t stand for it.

“It doesn’t make me worry about it happening again – I’m quite robust, I’m bold and brave.”

To learn more about DonMentia, visit: https://donmentia.org/

Enquiries are ongoing and anyone with information can contact South Yorkshire Police on 101 quoting investigation number 14/63393/22.