NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — A Bronx community was on edge Friday evening, after several attacks targeting those who are among society’s most vulnerable.
As CBS2’s Scott Rapoport reported, alarming signs were posted on the streets of a quiet section of Woodlawn, warning of violence and danger. The victims are women in their 70s and 80s.
“To prey on someone who’s in their 70’s or 80’s who can’t defend themselves – I mean, just think that’s really pretty pathetic,” said Woodlawn resident Elizabeth Ryan.
Ryan said in the last week or so, there has been a string of muggings targeting the elderly women.
“It’s frightening,” said resident Peggy Brennan. “It really is.”
Last Sunday, police said a 77-year-old woman was knocked down and robbed of her purse on Oneida Avenue and 236th Street. Neighbors say the mugger jumped out of a sport-utility vehicle and attacked.
Ryan said she heard screams and called 911, and added that she will never forget the victim’s battered face.
“I see blood dripping down her face. I ran across to see if she was OK. I thought she fell,” Ryan said, “and she told me someone stole her bag, and they took off in a car.”
The very next day, a few blocks away on Martha Avenue and 237th Street, police said a 76-year-old woman was attacked and robbed of her purse.
Her neighbors said she too suffered cuts and bruises to her face, and that there have been two additional muggings in the surrounding area in the last week or two.
The attacks have left many in the neighborhood — particularly the elderly — feeling shaken and fearful.
“It don’t make me feel too safe in the neighborhood with something like that going on,” said Woodlawn resident John Daly, who said he is worried about his wife.
Thus far, despite CBS2’s requests, the NYPD has given no description of the suspect or suspects. Police also have not released any further details of the crimes.
Residents said cameras from a nearby home may have caught one of the attacks.
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