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93-year-old Orange woman robbed while sleeping, scooter and cash stolen

A stock image of a red mobility scooter.

By Peter Holmes

As 93-year-old Mary lay sleeping in her villa near the top of Summer Street on Monday night, one or more thieves entered her garage, according to her daughter Jill [surnames withheld for privacy].

They then made their way inside her villa.

A phone handset was stolen from the property, as was $170 in cash.

Fortunately, Jill had possession of her mother's banking cards at the time of the robbery.

The thief or thieves then made off with Mary's expensive red mobility scooter - or gopher - which she uses to tootle about town.

The scooter had been charging in the garage, however the battery charger - worth thousands of dollars - was left behind.

"[Mary] is upset, she's still finding things missing," Jill told The Orange News Examiner on Tuesday.

"We've just discovered they took the handset from her phone; I'm not sure if that was so nobody could make a call."

Jill said the thief or thieves "hadn't made a mess" inside the villa.

Keep an eye out for a red mobility scooter, possibly a "Discovery" brand.

"They didn't damage anything, and it could have been a lot worse."

After finishing a night shift she called police on Tuesday morning to report the theft of the mobility scooter.

It was only later she became aware of the money and the phone handset being missing, meaning the initial call was treated as a theft but not a break and enter.

Due to a particularly hectic Monday night - including a senior constable being injured in a pursuit with two 4WDs, and car tyres being slashed at a car dealership, and around the city - Orange Police were unavailable for comment.

Jill believes there is a strong chance that Mary - who is in the early stages of dementia - may have accidentally left the automatic garage door open.

Entry to the villa can be gained via the garage, and Jill said that as a rule Mary didn't lock that door.

Jill asked any readers who spotted a red mobility scooter - possibly a Discovery brand - dumped around the city to contact Orange police.

She said that Mary slept through the theft, but that she had reported "a disturbed night's sleep".

UPDATED 3:49pm 08/02/22: Jill reports that police found the mobility scooter in National Avenue. The key was missing but otherwise the scooter was intact.


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