Mother and toddler traumatised as masked thieves wave weapons and wreck car

A terrified mother has described how armed robbers threatened her family on their drive and her shock when the police never turned up despite her begging for help.

One of the men captured on video
One of the men captured on video

Emma, who does not want to give her full name as she is still in fear of the robbers, was in her Woodsetton home when she heard noises outside and pulled back the curtains to be confronted by the sight of men with weapons.

They were stealing the catalytic converter from her car and brandished bats and sticks when she banged on the windows.

She said: "Around 12.30am I heard noises and we saw three men masks in balaclavas with tools trying to steal our car, they were taking the catalytic converter.

"I began banging and screaming from the upstairs window, one was under our car, one was already armed with a weapon and the other got armed with a weapon, they started waving, pointing them and threatening us.

"We were terrified. We called 999, told to wait for police, 50 minutes later and long after the criminals sped off in a black Audi we had to ring back ourselves to find out what was going on.

"I searched for West Midlands Police's line number but it's no longer active so had to go through 111 only to be told no one was coming, instead someone will call for a statement.

"Despite the fact we begged and reiterated we were afraid, we'd been threatened with weapons, the police have still not called us the next day to take a statement. No wellness check, no safety check."

The 32-year-old added: "I don't know what to do to ensure our safety. Insurance companies are inundated with these crimes at the moment. What can we do when we need protecting and no-one's there? A few years ago I had a wanted man hiding.

"Who will protect us? How do we keep our families safe?"

"We are not well off, we live modest lives, work hard and volunteer in the community. It instils fear, every noise we look out, how can we sleep feeling safe? Every face I see whilst walking in town or shopping I wonder if that's you who threatened our family, was it them that waved a weapon yelling at us?"

Emma's young daughter has been traumatised by the crime and often brings the robbery up to her parents.

She said: "My daughter is not yet three and was shaking and hiding under the covers and keeps talking about the bad man that broke the car. We have jobs, nursery inductions, dental appointments, normal lives - we now have to find ways to get about as we only have that one car."

She added: "I'm numb, I'm vacant, I'm in shock. And what for? A few hundred pounds scrapping a piece of metal?"

After posting the video on Facebook Emma was inundated with victims of crime with similar stories of police inaction when told of crimes in the Black Country.

The Express & Star relayed the complaints to West Midlands Police and Emma's disgust at the police response to her concerns.

A West Midlands Police spokesperson said: “Three masked men used electric power tools to cut a catalytic converter from a car in Parkes Hall Road, Dudley, in the early hours of July 1.

"The offence happened at around 12.35am. Five minutes later, at 12.40am, we received a 999 call alerting us to the theft. We understand the offenders made off in a black Audi.

"We’ve crimed the offence (sic) and are appealing for anyone with information, or who saw a black Audi driving in the area at the time, to get in touch.

"Please contact us via Live Chat on our website quoting crime reference 20/606733/22."

Emma

said: "The officer I spoke to when getting the crime reference number said he's apologising constantly to victims. He said him and other officers love nothing more than getting the bad guy on a chase but just don't have the resources. They have to prioritise who is in need."

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