No warning

PUBLISHED: 10:08 11 December 2008 | UPDATED: 13:48 06 May 2010

SIR, — A friend of ours was recently mugged in Harpenden at 5pm in a quiet residential area of the town. She was attacked by two smartly-dressed young men who had pulled up in their car a few yards ahead of her. They snatched her handbag and drove off. As

SIR, - A friend of ours was recently mugged in Harpenden at 5pm in a quiet residential area of the town. She was attacked by two smartly-dressed young men who had pulled up in their car a few yards ahead of her. They snatched her handbag and drove off.

As well as the shock, this caused her a great deal of inconvenience because they took her cash and she had to cancel her credit cards. Luckily she had her door keys in a coat pocket and so did not end up having to change the locks on her house. I now understand the police are giving this advice when they talk to women's clubs, but why is this information not more widely advertised?

Despite reporting this matter to the police, the incident does not appear to have been passed on to the local press to forewarn the rest of us. Why was this? At this time of year people are more vulnerable because they often carry large amounts of cash for Christmas shopping. It seems the lessons to be learned here are that it is foolish to carry too much cash as credit cards can be cancelled quickly in such circumstances at no loss to the victim, and for women to keep keys and mobile phones separate from their handbags.

What puzzles me is that there was no advice of this mugging on the Online Watch Link email alerts from Herts Constabulary which I receive on a regular basis. When I contacted the police by email, they confirmed that they were aware of the incident but it seems they did not see fit to alert the public.

This leads me to the obvious conclusion that the police are being selective in issuing warnings about local crime. Is this to avoid spreading alarm or a deliberate ploy to fool the public into a false sense of security? Surely telling us the truth about local crime would make us more careful and protective of each other. We need to be vigilant at all times and take note of suspicious characters and cars in our town in order to stop these low-life criminals in their tracks.

Janet Gribble,

Field Close, Harpenden.


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