82-year-old chased off burglars after attack on her dog
A GREAT-GRANDMOTHER fought off a burglar during a bungled break-in at her home.
Thelma Bardsley, 82, battled one intruder with her walking stick while two others tried to burgle her Long Eaton home.
She hit one of the men three times on his arm as he held her back, then once more on the knee before he and his two accomplices fled empty handed from her bungalow.
The trio, who police are trying to trace, also sprayed liquid in the face of her five-year-old shih tzu Kracker, who suffered damage to his eyes.
The incident happened at 7.45pm on February 6 at Mrs Bardsley's home in Darwin Road.
She said: "The adrenaline took over while they were in the house, it was only after they had run off and I got to a neighbour's house that my arms and legs started shaking and I collapsed.
"How they can do that to such a friendly little dog like Kracker I don't know.
"I was so angry with them, especially seeing what they did to him.
"The vet told me it was some sort of spray, like pepper spray but not the same, but his eyes are getting a lot better now."
Mrs Bardsley, whose daughter Carol Stephen, 63, also lives in Long Eaton, was watching TV when Kracker ran crying to her in the living room.
As she went to help him she said she noticed a man standing by the door.
When she confronted him he told her he was here to see a man called Steve.
Mrs Bardsley, who has grandchildren Andrew, 39 and Karla, 41, and great-grandchildren Liam, 20, and Georgia, 18, told him: "There is no Steve lives here".
"Then he said he wanted cocaine and I told him I didn't have any cocaine so he asked for money," she said.
"As he did so he grabbed me by the arm while another shorter man pushed past me and into the room.
"I then saw an older man, with grey hair and moustache standing outside by the kitchen door which was open."
Mrs Bardsley said while she was being held one of the men went into her bedroom looking for things to steal but could not find anything.
Mrs Bardsley said: "I am 82-years-old, I have lived through the Second World War and I am not going to let people like that come into my house and take what they want."
Officers from Derbyshire police are working with Leicestershire police to see if the same men were responsible for a distraction burglary that happened earlier the same day in Melton Mowbray.
The man Mrs Bardsley struggled with was white, slim, in his early 20s, around 5ft 6in and spoke with an Irish accent.
Call Erewash CID on 101 with any information.