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Serial handbag robber jailed 


A serial handbag robber who targeted lone women in Birmingham has been jailed.

James Franklin,38, of Bartley Drive, Bartley Green, targeted women in three robberies in Weoley Castle and Bartley Green in May this year.

His crime spree came to an end when eagle-eyed officers, recognised Franklin – who was walking along Weoley Castle Square -  from CCTV that they had just viewed in connection with one of the robberies.

And at Birmingham Crown Court on Monday (27 June) Franklin admitted to the three offences and was jailed for a total of six years.

In one robbery he snatched a handbag from an 80-year-old woman as she walked along Culford Drive, Bartley Green. He then followed her home and got into her house and stole cash.

On another two occasions on Longfield Road and Woodcock Lane he grabbed women from behind and then stole their handbags.

DC Philip Hinton, from Birmingham's Acquisitive Crime Team, said: "Franklin was a coward who targeted vulnerable women leaving them shocked and distressed and we hope that the sentencing will offer some comfort to them.

"It was a day after the Culford Drive Robbery and I had just watched some CCTV footage that had been recorded from a nearby shop.  I was on my way back to the station when I spotted a man walking along Weoley Castle square that matched the offender’s description.

"He was immediately arrested and taken into custody,  I am convinced that if he had not been arrested he would have carried on committing robberies and his sentencing means that another criminal is off our streets for a long time."

Franklin received four years for the Culford Drive robbery, two years for the Longfield Road robbery and eight months (to run concurrently) for the Woodcock Lane offence totalling in a six year sentence.