Woman pushing pram forced into home

Spate of house robberies in PE continues with two taking place within three hours

Elderly man robbed by former gardener in Fernglen

Crime scene police tape. File picture
Crime scene police tape. File picture

Two separate house robberies, one involving a nanny pushing a pram, occurred in Port Elizabeth on Thursday morning.

In one incident, a 35-year-old nanny was held hostage at about 10.30am while she was pushing a child in a pram to a house in Brusileiro Street in Parsons Vlei.

Police spokeswoman Colonel Priscilla Naidu said the attack took place as she returned to the house.

Naidu said: “As she was preparing to unlock the gate, a man snuck up behind her and put something - believed to be a firearm - against her neck.

"She was warned not to turn around or scream before being ushered into the house with the child in the pram. The suspect took them to a bedroom and locked them inside.

“After being locked in the bedroom, she heard voices inside the house suggesting that more than one suspect was present.

"They managed to open a safe and steal various valuables, including Kruger coins and a rare coin collection,” Naidu said.

“The men then fled and the woman managed to scream out of the window. The neighbours in turn went to investigate and freed her and the child.”

The estimated value of coins and collectables stolen was about R600 000.

In a separate robbery at about 7.30am in Cape Road, Fernglen, a 75-year-old man was robbed by his former gardener who held him at knife point inside his house.

“The man lives alone and went out the back door to unlock the side gate for the garden service.

"As he walked back into the house, he was confronted by his former gardener who was armed with a knife and a stick.

"The home owner was threatened and did not resist,” she said.

“The suspect then grabbed a cellphone and money. He unlocked the front door and ran away.”

No one was injured during either incident. 

The attacks were carried out just a day after businesswoman Marilyne de Vos, 52, was ambushed and hijacked outside her Linkside home on Wednesday morning and Anne Smith was beaten during a robbery inside her Kamma Park home on Monday.

Naidu said police were warning residents to be extra cautious. 

 “We have seen a change of modus operandi. It must be noted that it is clear that criminals are watching and planning their robberies. They appear to know the patterns of their targets,” Naidu added.

“Be vigilant and if you see anything suspicious, call 10111 and we will send someone to investigate.”

Naidu said all investigations into the  the recent house robberies were being overseen by Mount Road cluster detectives.

“At the cluster office our detectives will monitor the crimes and see if these are  the same or different groups.”