This year’s Easter long weekend for elderly Mandurah resident Lynnette Willis started with the scare of a lifetime and an overnight stay in hospital.
Ms Willis woke up in her Mandurah Terrace unit on Thursday evening with a sore head and a bleeding arm to find out that she had been assaulted, knocked unconscious and had had all her valuables stolen.
She had just returned from a shopping trip to a nearby supermarket around 5pm when she decided to lay down for a while.
“I thought ‘I’ve got to feed the cats’, which I do every afternoon,” she said.
“But then I thought, ‘better go and lock the gofer up first’.”
Ms Willis was in her front veranda putting the cover on her $6,000 gofer when a tall young dark-skinned man appeared out of nowhere and started to push her towards the open door.
While Ms Willis, who depends on a walking stick, was fighting to stand, she hit her arm with a brick wall.
Shortly after a second young man wearing a black hoodie appeared, the first man grabbed a silver object and hit Ms Willis in the head.
Dizzy, she was pushed inside the house, where she stumbled towards the room and collapsed in bed.
She didn’t wake up until more than an hour later, when she heard the phone ringing.
The offenders had already gone through the house, stolen her jewellery, a Guess designer bag, and her purse, where she had $600 to pay for rent and bills and several photos of her late husband.
The offenders fled the scene, leaving a mess of broken objects behind.
Police came to Ms Willis home shortly after 9pm, when she was taken to hospital to check on her head concussion and defensive wounds.
She is now back in her Mandurah Terrace home, but she said she is still in shock and is unable to feel safe in her own house.
“I just keep breaking down all the time,” she said.
“Even when police came I was reluctant to open the door, I was so frightened.”
However, Ms Willis said she doesn’t want to leave.
“I don’t want to leave because this is my home, I’ve been here for 13 years,” she said.
“I have no money at all and I haven’t got any family.”
Ms Willis believes she had been targeted at the nearby shopping centre, where she had taken a substantial amount of money to pay for rent and bills.
She also believes the offenders jumped into her property using a tall tree in the empty block next door.
She is hoping that following the incident, the Department of Housing will install security lights in her unit complex soon and will get the tree in the block adjacent to her property removed.
“They are targeting the elderly people, they are cowards,” she said.
“I’m diabetic, I’ve got a very serious heart condition, I’m asthmatic and insulin dependent, they could’ve easily killed me.
“I can’t believe they can be this low at this time of the year.”
Ms Willis is now appealing to anyone with information about the offenders or her stolen property to contact police.
She described the two male offenders as dark-skinned and in their late 20’s.
One of the offenders was 6-foot-tall and clean shaved, she said.
The other man was described as having longer hair.
Among Ms Willis’ stolen items are a gold cross, a Tissot silver watch, a set of white gold engagement and wedding rings, old photographs, and a couple of rhinestone brooches.
Anyone with information can call police on 131 444 or CrimeStoppers on 1800 333 000.