Widower tells of ‘kneecapping’ terror

Robbery victim Russell Edwards
Robbery victim Russell Edwards

A WIGAN widower has spoken of his terror after a gun-toting robber burst into his home and threatened to ‘kneecap’ him.

The hooded intruder, who escaped with little more than £50, told victim Russell Edwards he would shoot him in his legs and kill his dogs if he didn’t get what he wanted.

Police, who described the incident as being like something from a gangster film, have appealed for information.

Mr Edwards said he was sitting in the front room of his home in Argyle Street, Hindley, at around 5.30pm on Saturday, December 27, when he heard scratching on his front door and saw the handle moving.

As he went to find out what it was, the intruder burst inside, pushing back the terrified pensioner and inflicting injuries to his arm.

The cowardly yob then began yelling at his frail victim in a bid to get cash, threatening to shoot 65-year-old Mr Edwards in the kneecaps and kill his dogs.

The victim had bravely defied his assailant but was forced to relent when his beloved Ridgeback and Jack Russell’s lives were threatened.

“As I got to the door he knocked me flying inside,” he told the Wigan Evening Post. “He was too strong for me, he put a pistol-type gun at my knee.

“He told me he would shoot my kneecap and I told him he wasn’t getting anything. He also threatened to shoot the dogs if I didn’t give him £50.

“I promised my wife before she died that I would look after them so I couldn’t let any harm come to them.

“He took £40 from my wallet and loose change that was around £15.”

The robber also made off with a strip of Mr Edwards’ anti-inflamatory tablets which he needs for trapped nerves in his arms and legs.

As a result, he suffered serious discomfort in the aftermath of the incident.

After getting the cash, the robber fled in the direction of Chapel Green Road.

“When he went he told me if I went to the door he would shoot me,” added Mr Edwards.

“I went and opened it slowly and I saw him running up the road before slowing down and walking.

“I’m not scared, I’m just very hurt.

“I’m 65 but there are old people this could happen too, older than me. I just want him caught so this doesn’t happen to anyone else.”

Mr Edwards describes the man as white, around 5ft 10ins tall, of medium build and having a dark moustache. He was wearing a blue hooded coat with a red pattern on the back with the hood tied tightly around his face and grey tracksuit bottoms. He also spoke with a Wigan accent.

Earlier this week, police launched an appeal for information, in the hope that due to the early timing of the incident someone may have seen something.

Det Con Lee Jamieson said: “This poor victim was understandably left shocked and shaken.

“The fact that this thug burst into a stranger’s house, threatened him with such extreme violence, and then walked out so casually, shows that he is more than capable of doing something similar again.

“It is vital, therefore, that anyone who may have seen a man matching the above description in the area at the time to contact police as soon as possible.”

Anyone with information should call police on 0161 856 7225 or the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.