THE SEARCH for criminals involved in a string of break-ins and home robberies over the past few months in Tamworth took a new violent turn yesterday as police launched an appeal for information about a man who threatened an elderly woman in South Tamworth.
Police have stepped up their investigation into one of the latest crimes releasing a Comfit, or computer based image, of a man wanted for the attack on the 81-year-old early on Monday.
The woman was in bed in her Bell St home at the time but the man’s threats and sexual innuendos delivered to the old lady have put police on a higher alert.
The man’s threatening behaviour is the latest in a rash of break-ins with numerous older women the victims. This time, the nature of the home invasion has taken a nasty turn.
The computer image released late yesterday shows a young man with dark features and with a moustache, although the robber might be more clean shaven.
Police said the break-in occurred just after midnight on Monday and the house was dark. The woman apparently woke up to find the man standing beside her bed.
The man threatened her but left the Bell St home a short time later, and did not steal anything.
She was shaken but not physically injured, although she was checked at the scene by NSW Ambulance paramedics and she is now staying with family members.
Police were alerted and conducted a search of the area without success but yesterday released another appeal for public help in the wake of the crime.
They’ve described the wanted man as being aged in his 20s and at the time wearing dark clothing and they want to hear from anyone who might be able to identify the man or help them trace him, or who has any information about the incident.
Investigating officer in charge, Senior Constable Graham Goodwin, described the Bell St break-in as a very disturbing incident.
“Police are extremely concerned about this particular offence,” Constable Goodwin said.
“ After entering the home of the elderly victim, the offender made comments and actions towards the victim of a sexual nature.
“Investigators are very concerned by the behaviour of the offender and request any information regarding the break and enter be forwarded to the Tamworth Detectives office.”
They are also hoping for information about anyone seen acting suspiciously in the vicinity of Bell St about midnight to contact Tamworth Police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.