Pensioner left homeless from deadly care home fire is mugged outside Gravesend gurdwara

PUBLISHED: 10:14 04 July 2017

Ann Leary (left) and Carol Wright (right) say they were mugged in Gravesend on Sunday

Ann Leary (left) and Carol Wright (right) say they were mugged in Gravesend on Sunday


Police are appealing for witnesses

The Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara in GravesendThe Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara in Gravesend

A pensioner left homeless from a fatal care home fire was mugged at the weekend after visiting Gravesend’s famous gurdwara.

Ann Leary, lived in Emily Court care home until a deadly fire in her neighbour’s room forced her out of her flat.

One man died in the blaze, which started in Barn End Lane on June 11.

Ms Leary, who is 76 and was out on the night the fire ripped through the Wilmington care home, said: “I have difficulty breathing, and some of the people evacuated were treated for smoke inhalation, that could have killed me.

“I had a lucky escape being out on the night, but now I’m living with my cousin.”

But her luck ran out at the weekend, when her cousin Carol Wright, decided to take her to the £15million Guru Nanak Darbar Gurdwara, one of the largest Sikh temples in the UK.

“I thought I’d take her along to take a look outside, because it’s so big,” said Mrs Wright.

“We were standing by the arch, starting to walk away when a young man, probably under 20, started talking to us, we’re friendly people and will talk to anyone, so we chatted away, he told us he was into boxing.

“Suddenly he pushed us, while grabbing hold of our necks, he stole Ann’s gold chain, it’s lucky we didn’t fall over.

“We’re happy people, but this has made us wonder if we should be more careful who we talk to.”

Ms Leary added: “I’ve recently gotten over some terrible food poisoning which could have really harmed me, then when this happened I could have had a really bad asthma attack, my good luck has run out.”

Kent Police are now investigating the incident.

A spokesperson said: “We were called at 1.21pm on Sunday, June 2, to a report of a robbery in Saddington Street.

“A man is alleged to have stolen jewellery from two women.

“Kent Police is keen to speak to anyone who witnessed the incident or know the identity of the suspect.

“Witnesses are asked to call the appeal line on 01474 366149 quoting reference number XY/31793/17.

“Alternatively, contact Kent Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.”

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