CCTV appeal following purse theft in Wimborne

Officers are issuing CCTV images of a suspect as they investigate a purse theft in Wimborne town centre.

The victim, a woman aged in her 70s, had her purse stolen from her bag while in Seasalt in The Square at around 1.50pm on Wednesday 26 June 2019.

The purse contained her bank cards, one of which was subsequently used to withdraw £280 at a cashpoint at Waitrose in the town a short time later.

A further attempt was made to use the card for a transaction of £1,049 at an Argos store in the Bournemouth area around an hour afterwards. This attempt was unsuccessful.

Following enquiries by officers, it is believed that the suspect stood behind the victim as she used a cashpoint in High Street in Wimborne and followed her for around ten minutes before stealing the purse in Seasalt.

It is believed she was able to obtain the victim’s PIN number as she was stood behind her at the cashpoint, which enabled her to withdraw the money.

Police Community Support Investigator Kate Hann, of Dorset Police, said: “We are continuing to investigate this matter and I am issuing CCTV images of the suspect in the hope that someone will recognise her.

“I would also urge shoppers to remain vigilant to avoid becoming victims of this type of offence. Always make sure your PIN is covered when using a cash machine or paying for items.

“Make sure your bag is kept close and secured at all times and there are also items such as purse bells that can make it harder for thieves to steal items from your bag. For more crime prevention advice visit www.dorset.police.uk/help-advice-crime-prevention/.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Dorset Police at www.dorset.police.uk, via email 101@dorset.pnn.police.uk or by calling 101, quoting occurrence number 55190096982. Alternatively, contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or via www.crimestoppers-uk.org.