A fresher has told how she thought she was going to die as she was dragged along the street by a drive-by robber who grabbed her bag through the window of his moving car.
Sadie Fox was walking along Victoria Terrace, Hyde Park, at about 5.20pm on Tuesday when the man – driving a black Renault Clio stolen from Beeston that morning – reached out of the window and tried to snatch the bag from her shoulder.
The 18-year-old, who is studying media and communications at Leeds University, said: “He put his foot down and the next thing I knew I was being dragged along the ground because my hand was caught in the strap.
“He must have been going about 50mph, my legs were bumping up and down and I was screaming. I was just trying to keep my head up.
“I could see this Range Rover coming towards me. At that point I thought I was going to die.”
The student, who is originally from Solihull but moved to Hyde Park three weeks ago, escaped serious injury after the thief swerved, freeing her arm.
She suffered cuts and bruises, but Det Insp Dave McDougal said: “The victim was left very badly shaken by what happened and clearly the consequences could have been much worse.”
Detectives are linking the robbery to the attempted robbery of a 22-year-old woman which happened minutes earlier in Little Woodhouse Street, which runs through the Leeds General Infirmary site.
The victim was walking along when a man in a black Renault Clio tried to grab her bag as he drove past. She kept hold of the bag and the man let go before speeding off towards Clarendon Road.
The thief was described as white, slim, aged in his twenties, with short fair hair and was wearing a dark jumper or coat.
The car involved had been stolen from Dewsbury Road, Beeston, at about 11.20am. It has not yet been found.
Miss Fox added: “I was having a great time in Leeds, I haven’t felt unsafe, and I don’t want this one thing to affect the rest of my time here.”
Det Insp McDougal added: “We are conducting extensive enquiries to trace the person responsible and we would like to hear from anyone who has any information that could assist the investigation.”
Anyone with information is asked to contact the neighbourhood crime team at Weetwood Police Station via 101 or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.