The mother of a girl who was confronted by a knife-wielding man in an alleyway, says her daughter is ‘looking over her shoulder’ following the incident.
The 17-year-old and a friend were walking through an alley running between Piltdown Close and Beeching Way at 11am on Monday (July 20)when the man approached them.
Mum Anoek Deeprose told the Observer: “She walked down there with a friend and they heard someone say ‘give us your bag’.
“She thought it was someone she knew and turned around and said no, but then she was he was holding a pocket knife.”
The girl’s friend, also aged 17, was able to get away, but the man repeated his demand before making a lunge for the bag.
Ms Deeprose said: “The guy grabbed hold of her bag and cut the strap with his knife, but she held on to it.
“At that moment she started to cry and he ran away.”
Luckily a man on a bike appeared at the entrance to the alley and ensured the shaken teenagers were OK before accompanying them to the nearby police station.
Ms Deeprose said her daughter, who does not want to be named, did not want to let go of the bag as it contained sponsorship forms for a 24-hour sponsored fish which the girl had organised in aid of the Bexhill Sea Angling Club.
The Bexhill College student, who also volunteers for the British Heart Foundation, has been so shaken by the incident that she had to be accompanied on her paper round.
Ms Deeprose said: “It’s completely knocked her confidence in going out.
“She’s looking over her shoulder because of it.”
Ms Deeprose says she has warned friends with daughters to be careful and has urged anyone who knows the youth responsible to go to police.
She added: “If it was my child who had done this, I would have given them up.”
Police have appealed to the public to help catch the would-be robber.
The man is described as white, aged 18 to 20, skinny, 5’ 7” to 5’ 8” with dark hair. He was wearing a dark blue hoody.
Officers say the suspect fled empty-handed from the direction he came from - down Piltdown Close and towards the gym in Little Common Road, close to the fire station.
Anyone with information, or who may have seen the girls being followed, should contact police by emailing email@example.com or call 101 quoting serial 0490 of 20/07.
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