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September 5, 2003

Deaf woman robbed while asleep

From: Redditch Standard, UK - Sep 5, 2003

THE HOME of a disabled and deaf Church Hill woman was burgled as she lay asleep last week.

Thieves stole a number of valuable items during the raid at the 32-year-old's bungalow in Chedworth Close last Wednesday (August 27).

Belongings including a television, Gameboy and mobile phone - her only means of communication with the outside world - were amongst the items snatched.

The woman, who did not want to be named, found she had been burgled after waking at around 4am to see the hall light had been switched on. She then went into the living room to discover it had been ransacked.

Also taken was an asthma inhaler, a purse containing £1.60, and credit cards - which were then used by the thieves.

Glenda Davis, of the Royal National Institute for the Deaf, told The Standard she believed the attack was "callous" and hoped the missing items could be retrieved.

She said: "The bungalow has been totally wrecked. Everything has been turned upside down and we're still not sure if anything else has been taken.

"When the victim tried to call for help she found her mobile had gone and whoever did it obviously knew she was deaf because the Gameboy was stolen from right beside her bed."

A social worker and crime prevention officer have met with the distraught woman as she tries to recover from the raid.

Mrs Davis added: "All we can do now is try and support her, get extra help and see what else can be done.

"It's disgraceful - there's no way she could have chased the thieves off because she's in a wheelchair, and why they would want to take things like her inhaler just puzzles me."

Anyone with information on the raid is urged to call Redditch police on 08457 444888 or Crimestoppers confidentially on 0800 555111.

© 2003 Redditch Standard