Callous woman jailed after robbing elderly disabled man at Hartlepool town centre cashpoint
A callous woman has been jailed for robbing an elderly and disabled man in Hartlepool town centre just moments after watching him withdraw £700 from a cash machine.
Tammy Wilmot, 31, and a group of men eyed up the victim who uses two walking sticks as he took out money from the Yorkshire Bank cash point on York Road.
She went up to the vulnerable victim as he walked away and pretended to help asking him “can you manage, are you alright?” Teesside Crown Court heard.
But he felt her put her hand in his pocket and during a struggle she snatched about £160.
Paul Newcombe, prosecuting, said: “The prosecution say this is a mean-spirited targeted offence of a clearly vulnerable man as its aim.”
The offence took place at about 10.30am on a Sunday morning.
Mr Newcombe added: “The basis of the robbery is she then jostled with the complainant. He said that he could feel her touching his body, clearly searching him for the money.
"He felt her hand go into his pocket and he grabbed hold of her hand accusing her of trying to steal from him.”
The victim was frightened he would fall over during the struggle.
Mr Newcombe said a woman Good Samaritan saw what happened and stepped in demanding Wilmot and the other men return the victim’s cash.
Police were quickly on the scene and found Wilmot had £70 on her.
Three other men have been charged with handling stolen goods in relation to the money.
In a victim personal statement the elderly man said he felt he had been picked on as an ‘easy target’ because he could not chase after her.
He said: “She needs to pay for what she’s done. It’s absolutely disgusting on a Sunday morning that I’m not safe taking money out in the middle of my home town.”
Wilmot, who pleaded guilty to robbery, has over 100 shoplifting and similar offences on her record linked to a longstanding heroin addiction.
Martin Scarborough, mitigating, said minimal force was used and the money was recovered.
He added Wilmot, of York Road, Hartlepool, was ashamed and she said: “I just want to say sorry to the victim.”
She was jailed for 15 months.