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Boy, 7, defends mum during brutal attack in Yarmouth

PUBLISHED: 09:00 10 December 2010

Police seal off the rows around Hall Plain after robbery

Police seal off the rows around Hall Plain after robbery

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2010

A SHOPKEEPER told how he had been left shocked by a robber’s horrific attack on a seven-year-old boy trying to protect his mum.

Thiagarajah Ragavon, who runs Costcutter’s, in Blackfriars Road, Great Yarmouth, dialled 999 for the 25-year-old woman when she burst into his shop shouting and crying after the attack shortly after 7.45pm on Sunday.

He noticed the boy had blood streaming from cuts to his head where the robber had struck him several times with what is thought to have been a snooker ball in a sock.

Mr Ragavon, who has passed his CCTV footage to police to see if it sheds light on the attacker, said: “I ran outside to see what was going on but the man had vanished.”

He said it was a shocking crime on a peaceful road. He had never experienced trouble in his shop and his customers were local people, including many pensioners.

Detectives have praised the heroism of the boy who went to his mother’s aid as the robber tried to drag her into an alley off Blackfriars Road.

The youngster, who is likely to be nominated for a bravery award, continued to try to pull his mother to safety even after the attacker struck him on the head.

The boy, who later needed cuts to his head treated at Gorleston’s James Paget University Hospital, was eventually knocked to the ground and he and his mother were only finally saved by a Good Samaritan passer-by who came to their aid.

Det Con Gill Dawson, leading the hunt for the robber, said: “It was extremely brave of him to try to protect his mother the way he did.

“I am extremely keen to appeal for witnesses who might be able to help us track down the attacker. What sort of bloke attacks a seven-year-old boy in such a brutal fashion?”

She said the woman and her son, who are Russian migrants who have come to live in Norfolk, were left “extremely shaken” by their ordeal.

They had been walking to the corner shop close to where they live when they noticed a man on a black or blue BMX bike fall off before getting up and approaching them.

“He ordered the mother to hand over her money and then grabbed her bag and tried to pull her into an alley that runs through the old town wall,” said Det Con Dawson.

When her son intervened, he swung the ball hard at him leaving him with three cuts near his hair line.

She said the attacker only ran off in the direction of St Peter’s Road, abandoning his bike, when a member of the public ran over and got involved.

The mother, a factory worker who speaks little English, then ran into the shop to raise the alarm.

“We think that when the assailant fell off his bike he sustained a cut to his forehead. We would like anyone who thinks they might know who it is to contact us,” she said.

The robber is described as a white man with a local accent, 18 to 20, about 5ft 10in, of thin build, with short dark blond hair a little longer on top than at the sides. He was wearing a black jacket and black jeans.

Det Con Dawson said: “We know a second Good Samaritan got involved and we are keen to speak to him as well.”

l Contact Det Con Dawson via 0845 454567 or anonymously via Crimestoppers 0800 555111


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