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Police step up patrols in neighbourhood where robbers put gun to boy's head

Police have stepped up patrols in a Walsall area where armed robbers pointed a gun at an 11-year-old boy’s head.

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Patrols have been stepped up on Athlone Road following the incident. Photo: Google Street Map

Paddock ward councillor Gurmeet Singh Sohal said people have been left “petrified” in their own homes following the incident on September 18 in Athlone Road.

Six armed men stormed the property and held a gun to a boy’s head and a knife to the neck of a 71-year-old grandmother as they demanded cash and jewellery.

They made off with a Rolex watch, car keys and jewellery but were unsuccessful in their attempts to steal a Mercedes and Range Rover off the drive.

During a discussion on policing at a council Scrutiny Overview Committee, Walsall Police chief superintendent Phil Dolby said patrols have been increased and urged the community to come forward with more information.

Councillor Sohal said: “I’m sure you’re aware of the robbery. People are petrified in their own homes, especially the elderly, and they are so scared to stay on their own.

"How can we reassure them of their safety?”

Chief Supt Dolby said: “We’ve increased our targeted patrols in that area and we have tried to have quite an offender focus.

“You can look at a victim, look at a place and look at an offender – you need to do all three things to try to solve a problem.

“But we’re trying to find the particular bad apples within that and see if we can get them out of the community.

"That is often a longer term solution to things.

“But the hard thing is we need more information from the community, if you can try to generate that for us.”

West Midlands Police is treating the incident as an “aggravated robbery” but despite CCTV footage, no-one has been arrested to date.

The family of the victims has offered a £20,000 reward for anyone who ‘turns in’ the perpetrators of the robbery.

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