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Search for a witness after a handbag theft

Police are looking for a witness who ran after a handbag thief in Newton Heath.

At around 6.15pm Tuesday 9 January 2018 a 55-year-old woman was walking along Orford Road when she felt her handbag being pulled by a man from behind.

Refusing to let the man take her bag, she held onto it and was dragged along the floor after losing her balance.

Despite her best efforts, he took her handbag and fled down the street.

Another man saw what had happened and ran after the offender, capturing him with the bag nearby and returning it to the woman.

The woman was taken to hospital where she spent three weeks recovering from serious injuries she sustained.

A 17-year-old teenager was arrested on suspicion of robbery has since been released under investigation.

Detective Constable Nicola Heywood of GMP’s City of Manchester Team said: “The woman has been hurt by the offender’s actions, not just physically, but mentally, as she’s scared to go out on her own now.

“While we do not suggest people approach offenders and put their own safety at risk, thanks to the witness’ heroic actions, the woman was reunited with her handbag and it’s absolutely crucial we speak to him so that we can find the person responsible.

“Similarly, if you saw the incident, or have information that could help our enquiries, please share this with police.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 1146 or 101, quoting incident number 1530 of 09/01/18. Reports can be made anonymously through the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

© Greater Manchester Police 2018