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Not a good start to the day

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


Chrissie2394 Report 20 Sep 2013 17:09

Today has been a day I wouldn't like to go through again.

I went into town to withdraw a considerable amount of money which I am lending my son until the end of the month so that he can purchase a car. The cashier put the cash into an envelope before handing it to me. After visiting a couple of small shops I went back to the Westfield shopping centre where I had parked my car. Whilst putting the coins into the ticket machine I felt my handbag being jostled. I immediately looked in my handbag and the envelope had gone. I felt so sick. Right behind me was a young woman and I spotted my envelope partly hidden between her elbow and her body. I immediately snatched the envelope back and another woman who was stood by the ticket machine said something (in another language) to the woman who had stolen my money. They both then fled,

I can't believe how badly this has affected me. I was shaking and felt so sick. An elderly couple using the next machine heard me shout and came to my aid.

It turned out I was their second victim. Their first, had seen the woman put her hand in her bag so they got nothing from her.

So ladies, when out shopping please be aware of who is around you and think about how secure your handbag is. I am now going to buy one that has a zip all the way across the top.



Guinevere Report 20 Sep 2013 17:34

What a horrible thing to happen. I'm glad you were able to get your money back.

Maybe it was picked up on CCTV, tell the police.


supercrutch Report 20 Sep 2013 17:34

Bloody hell Chris how awful.

I have seen some TV programmes re the same type of theft and the groups are very well organised.

You were extremely lucky to have got your money back but I understand just how upsetting this was.

Sue x


Chrissie2394 Report 20 Sep 2013 17:49


I was lucky in the fact that I felt her go in my bag, those who are better at this type of theft can do it without the victim feeling anything.

Police were there very quickly and thankfully there was a camera directly above where I was stood. CCTV showed the women walking towards the machines but did not cover the theft itself as I was directly underneath it. Hopefully now security have also seen the cctv, they can be aware of these two scum.



BrendafromWales Report 20 Sep 2013 19:20

THank goodness you spotted her...just shows how careful you have to be.
Was a terrible shock though.


Kay???? Report 20 Sep 2013 19:27

They often hang about in banks a pretence of fumbling in their bags but a watchful eye on whats going on then follow their victim till the time is right.....they are a bloody menace.glad no harm was done,

if they make that a regular haunt they will soon get caught.

then people moan about CCTV invading their space.......


SylviaInCanada Report 20 Sep 2013 20:04

I rarely have any money, purse or envelope, where it can be seen or snatched.

I have had my wallet stolen, in a coffee shop, out of my shopping bag, which I had not zipped up after removing the book I wanted to read.

The bag was half hidden under my skirt, and I still didn't feel anything. I lost credit cards, ID and cash

I walk with a cane, and now use a cross body bag, with the bag always at the front, never the side or pushed round the bag. The bags I use either have zippers OR a flap that comes over the top of the bag.

I do sometimes wear a sort of back pack, but the zipper to the main section is quite difficult to see, and to open.

I am horrified at the number of women I see around, on the streets and in stores, who walk around with their handbags open, and purses in full view. I've seen so many put their open handbags in the small section of a grcoery store trolley .............. then turn away from the trolley, or even walk from it!


Chrissie2394 Report 20 Sep 2013 20:27

I've been having a look online at handbags as I shall be buying one tomorrow. It will certainly have a full zip and hopefully a flap that goes over the top.

Because I hate any type of shopping I just go into town, get what I need and back home again, I never pay attention to who is around me. Looks like that will have to change. The worst feeling is knowing that they were probably following me until they felt the time was right. It's certainly knocked my confidence for going into town on my own.



AnnCardiff Report 20 Sep 2013 21:43

you were so lucky and no wonder you're shaken up - I hope you reported it to the police and that they will follow it up - they were probably East Europeans and not wishing to damn a whole nation, the Romanians seem to be the main culprits in these kind of crimes


Susan10146857 Report 20 Sep 2013 21:52

It may help to put small bells on the inside of ones pockets or bag....just a thought


Wend Report 20 Sep 2013 21:57

Sadly true Ann. What an awful experience for you Chrissie, but so glad they didn't get away with your cash.

Another reminder that we have to be aware of people around us at all times when we're out and about :-(

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 21 Sep 2013 04:43

So glad you got your cash back Chrissie, I can understand how sick you must have felt when the theft happened and hope those women get picked out so they can be watched themselves on cctv, the police and shopping centres do that if they know people are suspect.

If I have any large amounts of money I put it right down the bottom of my bag. I carry a lot of things in my handbag and most are inside a carrier bag so it rustles when it's touched, the money is usually underneath that and my phone is in a little pocket inside so not easily visible.

Maybe you would be best setting up a transfer with your online banking to your son's bank if you have to help him out sometimes. I can do an online transfer in seconds to my son's bank and then he can draw out the cash needed.

Don't let these horrible people stop you getting out.



LadyScozz Report 21 Sep 2013 05:35

What scum they are! I hope cctv shows their faces.

I'm not surprised you are still shaking.

I hope the trembling stops soon <3

When I go shopping I use a BIG shoulder bag with a zipper and a flap, the strap is long enough to go over my head, so the strap is across my chest, and the flap towards my body. I never leave it in the trolley at the supermarket.

I got into the habit of wearing my bag like that when we spent time in foreign countries.

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it

Shirley~I,m getting the hang of it Report 21 Sep 2013 07:45

What an awful experience ,no wonder you are all shook up. Bet it's put you off shopping too for a while.

Glad you got your money back though .hope you can console yourself knowing they didn't get away with it .

Hope the police wil find them

Take care <3


Chrissie2394 Report 21 Sep 2013 09:27

Thank you all for your replies.

It was an awful experience but I was very lucky in being able to snatch the money back. My heart goes out to those more vulnerable than I am, the elderly and disabled who get targeted.

Hubby's taking me to get a new bag today, I will take on board what has been said about the type of bag to go for.

Chris x


+++DetEcTive+++ Report 21 Sep 2013 09:39

Thank goodness they didn't succeed. Why do people think that they can take others belongings that they've worked hard to acquire or save? What happened to mutual respect?

Although it wouldn't have made any difference to an envelope, I've a chain attaching my purse to the bag, and a small bell hooked onto my credit card wallet. Having (almost) had the purse nicked, I admit that I'm verging on the paranoi!

We do tend to be more aware when we are outside our usual haunts. :-0


Maryanna Report 21 Sep 2013 10:04

How horrible for you Chris, I spend hours looking for the perfect bag.

Pretty much the same happened to me a good few years ago now.

Took my son and mates to the cinema for his birthday and on to Burger King.

Felt my bag being jostled whilst at the counter ordering, the chap standing next to me, very close, was passing something to his mate next to him who then scarpered.

I grabbed the bloke next to me and shouted he had stolen my purse, no reaction from other customers, just blank looks. We did get free meals though, police were called and the boys and I got a lift back to my car in a black mariah, ( I felt like Fagin) you can imagine the other parents reactions, mostly good after the initial shock.

The police even sorted out the parking as the ticket was in my purse. It was the only time I ever had over £200 in it as my boss had just given me a Christmas bonus.

Police said it was Irish travellers who they knew but the CCTV in the shop was turned off so they couldn't prove anything.

It shook me up for a long time after and I still won't leave a counter after paying without hiding my purse at the bottom of my bag and zipping and closing the flap, even though people behind me might have to wait five seconds longer.

I sympathise fully Chris but you were so lucky to be able to grab it back. There are too many people like them who think it is ok just to help themselves to other folks belongings.

Take care and good luck with the handbag search. M


~`*`Jude`*`~ Report 21 Sep 2013 10:54

Oh my giddy aunt, how lucky are you Chrissie and well done for snatching it back:)))

Take care



ChrisofWessex Report 21 Sep 2013 11:21

I no longer carry a bag but all the handbags I have purchased over many years have had either/both full zip or flap but more importantly to me another inside zipped pocket which I used to keep my cheque book and then as years went on my credit cards.

I would not doubt for one moment you are still shaken and will be for a bit. You were lucky and so quick at snatching, I wish you well.


Chrissie2394 Report 22 Sep 2013 15:00

New bag purchased.

In future I will make sure I am well aware of who is around me. The police are going to ring me in a few days to see if there is any more cctv showing the women. I so hope they can recover her fingerprints from the envelope and that she is known to the police.

Thank you all for your replies and good wishes.

Chris x