Thieves lay in wait for an elderly woman who lives on her own to leave the house so they could ransack her property last week.
Precious family heirlooms were stolen from the house of the Mourneview pensioner who was left extremely traumatised by the burglary.
Community worker Jonathan Mercer believed the attack on the house in Pollock Drive was planned. He said: “This lady goes to a church meeting every Tuesday so they’ve been watching her movements and knew when she’d be out of the house.”
PUP chair Aaron Dowey added: “This was an absolutely despicable attack on a vulnerable older person who lived on their own. I can’t imagine how terrifying this ordeal must have been for them, coming home on their own to find their house ransacked.
“Since the attack there has been a lot of fear in the area, particularly amongst older and vulnerable residents. Fortunately, local community volunteers along with ourselves have been walking round at night to provide reassurance. We will be continuing to do this for the foreseeable future and would encourage anyone who is able, to join us.
“Those responsible for this attack are cowardly thugs and I hope that they are swiftly brought to justice.”
MP David Simpson said: “It was devastating to see someone so scared in their own home following this most recent burglary within the estate. This was a despicable act carried out by individuals who have no respect for others, for property and for the law.”
He added: “The increase in burglaries within the Mourneview estate is alarming and we are meeting the PSNI in the next few days to discuss the matter. We believe there needs to be an increase in foot patrols, an organised neighbourhood watch scheme and additional measures given to the elderly and the vulnerable for helping secure their property. We are assisting the victim with extra security measures and would be happy to work with anyone who feels vulnerable at this time.”
Anyone with information is encouraged to go to PSNI.