May 25 2013 Latest news:
by Flora Drury
Friday, August 17, 2012
A jury took just an hour to convict a Tottenham man of robbing a Bounds Green pensioner in her own home as she returned from her chemotherapy session.
Unemployed Michael Mulroy attacked the 67-year-old woman, pushing her to the ground and stealing her purse, after he gained her trust by carrying out gardening jobs for cash over a number of months, Wood Green Crown Court heard.
The woman - who was undergoing chemotherapy at the time - had met Mulroy, of Vincent Road, in October 2011 when he spotted her pottering in her front garden offered his services as a gardener. She paid him £10 to trim the hedge.
Then, on Monday, January 30, he banged on the woman’s door and told her his daughter was in hospital following a car accident and he needed money for a cab to take him there. Feeling sorry for him, she gave him £13 - all the money she had.
Just two days later, Mulroy - who had a previous conviction for attempted murder - approached the woman again as she returned from a chemotherapy session. He said he had bought some scaffolding boards to build her a flower bed in her garden. She asked him to come back the following day as she was tired from her chemotherapy.
But Mulroy persisted, following her back to her house to put the boards in the hallway. He then demanded money.
When told he would be paid - as agreed - after the work had been carried out, the 44-year-old became aggressive and grabbed the woman’s wrists and demanded the money once more, continuing to shout at her.
The woman suggested that they go to see her next door neighbour who would help them settle the dispute. She went to the kitchen to collect her house keys and purse and when she returned to the hallway Mulroy snatched the purse from out of her hands and pushed her over, causing her to hit her head on the scaffolding boards.
Mulroy left and the woman managed to call the police, but declined any medical treatment.
Officers managed to trace his mobile phone number, as well as use DNA found in a glove he left behind and the woman’s description to track Mulroy down.
Mulroy refused to give evidence at the trial - which took place after he denied robbery but pleaded guilty to theft - and was sentenced to three years in prison after the jury found him guilty.
Speaking after the trial, his victim said: “I am very pleased with the efficiency of the police in rounding up this man from the streets and the successful outcome of the case and I hope this encourages others to cooperate with police investigations.
“All citizens need to feel secure and able to participate in their community.”
Investigating officer Det Con Paul Coyle added: “Mulroy abused the trust and goodwill of a vulnerable resident. I am pleased that he has received a significant sentence for so doing.
“I would like to thank the resident for supporting the investigation and giving evidence at court. I hope the outcome has provided some closure for her.”