Senior citizens targeted in recent string of violent bus stop purse-snatchings

Senior citizens targeted in recent string of violent bus stop purse-snatchings

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - Honolulu police are investigating a recent string of violent robberies that all had two things in common: the victims were women over the age of 60 who were all targeted at bus stops on Oahu.

Despite the possible link, it’s still not clear whether the crimes are related.

“Every time I get up, it really hurts me,” said Emily Magbarangalan, the 71-year-old victim of one such incident.

Two days after being beaten and dragged across the pavement by the pair of teenage purse snatchers, her body still aches.

“My chest and my back (are sore),” she said. “I don’t know how many times they kicked me.”

The purse-snatching happened just before 5 a.m. Wednesday morning at the bus stop near the intersection of Liliha and Kuakini streets. Magbarangalan says she was headed to work when she heard something behind her.

“When I look at them, they were young ones. They kept on pulling me,” said Magbarangalan. “I keep on screaming, ‘Help, help, help!’ They never say anything.”

The robbers took off on foot, leaving her laying in the middle of Liliha Street. And police records indicate several other victims have reported similar incidents.

Over the past three days, at least three women over the age of 60 have had their purses snatched while waiting at bus stops across Oahu.

Around 9 a.m. Thursday, a 61-year-old was robbed at the bus stop near the intersection of Hanakahi Street and Laupapa Street in Ewa Beach. The suspect escaped in a waiting car.

On Tuesday night, around 9 p.m., a 73-year-old woman was hurt when a man approached her from behind and grabbed her bag at the bus stop near the corner of Keeaumoku and Kinau streets.

The owner of Itchy Butt restaurant saw squad cars on the night of the Keeaumoku robbery, saying the neighborhood is a hot spot for crime.

“Not really surprised, you know,” said Lee Young. “It’s this area.”

Back in Liliha, a good Samaritan found Magbarangalan on the pavement and got her to her house, where she called police. Now she wants her story to serve as a warning to fellow seniors to always be on the look out. And, if possible ― a reminder not to go out alone.

“It’s too dangerous now-a-days,” she said.

If you have any information on any of these cases, you’re asked to call Honolulu Crimestoppers.

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