Pensioner, 81, dies 48 hours after burglar snatches her handbag

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An 81-year-old woman has died two days after her purse was snatched from her Lancaster home.

The pensioner passed away on Good Friday after she was taken ill.

Last Wednesday, April 16, a man knocked on the front door of her home in Cleveleys Avenue but she did not answer.

The man then went to the back of the house and entered via the back door to the kitchen, taking her purse from her handbag before leaving and walking back down the driveway onto the street.

He was then seen driving away in a white van.

The elderly victim discovered her purse, which contained money, debit and credit cards and a key, was missing around 90 minutes later.

The man was described as white, slim, around 175cm tall with short, dark brown hair.

When he called at the address, he was wearing a dark grey sweater and dark trousers.

DI Simon Dent, of Lancaster CID, said: “This is a tragic case where the victim has then passed away a couple of days later.

“We would appeal for any information anyone may have regarding the burglary, the man described or the vehicle described.

“Although the victim has described a white van, we are keeping an open mind to any visiting vehicles that were on Cleveleys Avenue at the time, and would welcome any information people may have that could help us catch this man.”

Anyone with information is urged to contact Lancashire Police on 101, quoting log number LC-20140416-0911 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.