Disabled pensioner targeted by thieves in Midhurst

A disabled pensioner was left shaken after a woman attempted to steal his Rolex watch in broad daylight in Midhurst last week.

Friday, 2nd July 2021, 12:53 pm
North Street, Midhurst. Picture via Google Streetview
North Street, Midhurst. Picture via Google Streetview

The 87-year-old, who has asked to remain anonymous, was followed by two women after parking in a disabled parking space in the town on Wednesday (June 23) before being accosted and having his 1950 Rolex taken from his wrist without him immediately noticing.

After checking himself over, the Fittleworth resident noticed the pricey timepiece was gone, so he grabbed the suspect by the arm and asked her to return it to him.

“I was shocked,” he said. “I looked down at my hand and my watch was gone – I never felt a thing. I shouted at her, ‘stop’, and I ran after her even though I’m 87 and said ‘you have stolen my watch’.”

After retrieving the watch he reported the matter to the police.

The watch, believed to be worth an estimated £12,000 has belonged to the pensioner for 40 years, is now with police as they continue their investigations.

He has now urged members of the public to be vigilant and added: “Don’t leave your watches or jewellery out on view. There’s a whole gang looking for watches or jewellery or anything.”

In response to the report, a spokesman for Sussex Police said: “We have received several reports of thefts and attempted thefts of high value watches in the West Sussex area recently and believe that various individuals are responsible for them.

“We are urging shoppers to be vigilant if approached by a stranger or strangers and urge anyone who witnesses any suspicious behaviour to call 999 at once.

“Anyone with information can also report online or call 101, quoting Operation Overdrive.”