Robbers attack man, 77, with shovel in Bishop Auckland

Bishop Auckland map

A 77-year-old man was hit over the head with a shovel before having his life savings stolen from his County Durham home by a gang of men, police said.

The pensioner had gone out to get coal on Saturday night when three robbers carried out the "abhorrent attack".

The man, who lives alone in the Coronation area of Bishop Auckland, was dragged into the house and pinned down.

Durham Police said the men escaped with the man's life savings, which was a "substantial amount of cash".

'Horrendous ordeal'

The pensioner, who has not been named, was taken to Darlington Memorial Hospital, where he was treated for his injuries and later released.

Det Sgt Peter Lonsdale said: "This was an abhorrent attack on a pensioner who had merely popped outside to fetch some coal to stoke up his fire.

"It must have been extremely terrifying for the victim who was put through a horrendous ordeal.

"He is obviously very shaken by the incident but thankfully does not appear to have suffered any serious injuries.

"The suspects escaped with this gentleman's life savings, which was a substantial amount of cash.

"Although investigations are at an early stage, this would appear to have been a targeted raid."

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