Purse thief clears out King’s Lynn OAP’s bank account

Stella Mackenzie of King's Lynn has had her purse stolen while in local post office on London Road. ANL-160308-191114009
Stella Mackenzie of King's Lynn has had her purse stolen while in local post office on London Road. ANL-160308-191114009
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A 77-year-old woman was walking through Lynn last Thursday when she realised her purse was gone, and then found her bank account cleared.

Stella McKenzie, a pensioner who lives in King’s Avenue, Lynn, believes that someone took her purse somewhere between London Road Post Office and Windsor Road at around 12.30pm.

Mrs McKenzie said: “I was walking towards the library, and for some reason I started looking in my bag, and there was no purse there. It was horrible – you feel sick.”

She explained that she did not go directly to her bank until the next morning, by which time her account had been cleared of a four-figure sum.

She said: “I should have gone straight to the bank as soon as I saw my purse was gone, but I felt rotten so I left it until the morning after.”

As well as her bank card, Mrs McKenzie had to replace her bus card and her library card, among others, which she said “wasn’t easy”.

But she has praised staff at Nationwide, police officers and MP Sir Henry Bellingham for their help.

“Thanks to Henry, I got my new bus card in two days. I also can’t praise Nationwide enough for everything they’ve done for me,” Mrs McKenzie said.

The money was reimbursed by Nationwide, which came as a surprise, as she said: “I just thought – well that’s it, it’s gone. I’ll just have to be more careful in the future.

“Although it was a horrible experience, it has turned out OK, but I just want them to find the person who did it.”

That has not stopped Mrs McKenzie from wanting to warn others to be more vigilant and careful when out and about in the area.

She said: “Anyone who uses London Road Post Office, be very careful of who’s behind you.”

She also wants the person who did take her purse to come forward, and said that police are looking at CCTV footage, which showed them going into her bank on Thursday last week.

She added: “I don’t think I’ve slept for about a week, because you’re turning it over in your mind all the time.”

Mrs McKenzie, who is originally from Lancashire but moved to Lynn 12 years ago to be closer to her family, has four sons and six grandchildren.

“My sons were all telling me off for it and told me they would come with me next time I need to go into town to get money out,” she said.

Her family live locally, with one of her sons residing in West Lynn and another in Pentney, which is where her six grandchildren are from as well.