AN ELDERLY woman suffered a serious hip injury after being robbed in Springbourne by a man offering to carry her bag.

The victim, who is in her 80s, was returning to her home on Washington Avenue at around 1.45pm last Friday, when an unknown man approached her and offered to carry her bag, after she visited Co-Op on Holdenhurst Road.

As she opened her front door, the woman, who was aided by two walking sticks, was pushed over by the man, who had claimed that he wanted to make sure that she got into her home safely.

He then grabbed the woman’s purse, which was hanging on a lanyard around her neck and contained cash and a small black Nokia 106 mobile phone, before running off towards Spring Road.

The woman had to be taken to hospital after receiving a serious hip injury during the fall.

Detective Constable James Taylor of Bournemouth CID described the incident as ‘a despicable attack on a vulnerable member of our community’.

He added: “The victim put her trust in this man and believed he wanted to help her. As a result she has suffered a serious injury and has been left severely shocked.”

The offender is described as a black man, 25 and 35 years old, of five feet seven inches in height and of slim build. He was wearing a dark coloured baseball cap, a dark blue hoody worn with the hood up and black trousers.

DC Taylor said that he was keen to apprehend the offender as soon as possible and bring him to justice.

Witnesses and anyone with information should contact Dorset Police on 101, quoting incident number 18:240 or the free and anonymous Crimestoppers line on 0800 555 111.