A GRANDMOTHER was knocked to the ground and told she would have her hands smashed with a hammer unless she handed robbers her diamond rings.
Beryl Black, 67, was targeted as she walked along one of Leeds’s most exclusive street just days after having her house broken into.
The pensioner believes the people who raided her home had been following her after seeing a picture in the house of her wearing the rings before carrying out the attack.
Two men attacked her from behind as she was out walking along Sandmoor Drive, Alwoodley, at 10.30am on Wednesday, April 11.
Mrs Black told the YEP: “I was petrified. They said ‘stop screaming or we will smash your head in’. They told me to take the rings off and one of them brought a hammer near to my hands and threatened to smash them if I didn’t do it quickly.”
Six days before the robbery her home on The Lane, Alwoodley, was burgled while she was on holiday in Tenerife with her husband Anthony.
Thousands of pounds worth of jewellery, antiques and family heirlooms were taken, along with the couple’s two cars.
Mrs Black said: “They emptied out every drawer and cupboard and took just about everything of value. I think it is too much of a coincidence for the two incidents not to be connected.
“It struck me as odd that they had taken down a picture of me and my husband on holiday and had left it on the table. The rings are clear to see on the photo.”
The attackers fled in the direction of Alwoodley Lane after taking her diamond engagement ring, an eternity ring and another diamond ring from her right hand.
Mrs Black said the attack brought back chilling memories of the murder of Leeds businessman John Luper, who was killed after being targeted by robbers on the same street in 2004.
Mr Luper, 57, was walking his Jack Russell terrier outside his home when he was attacked by two or more men.
He was dragged into the house and was later discovered naked from the waist up.
His wife Iycian and daughter Liza-Rose and the family’s Turkish au pair were tied around their hands and feet with duct tape.
The bedroom was ransacked and cash and jewellery worth £100,000 was taken. The attackers have never been caught
Mrs Black added: “I thought I was going to die and I’m just relieved they didn’t kill me and that I didn’t have a heart attack.
“At the moment I am oppressed with shock but I don’t want to think I will be too scared to go out walking again.
“I have high blood pressure and walk three miles every day for my health and I don’t want these people to ruin my lifestyle.
“It is so unfair that those who do this kind of thing make people so scared.”