Poland: Woman foils bank heist by whacking robber with walking stick
A wannabe bank robber in Poland was brought to a swift halt by an angry pensioner.
The thief, armed with a knife, was no match for her elderly nemesis and her fearsome walking stick.
Footage shows the moment the pensioner used her mobility aide as a weapon to keep the criminal at bay.
She had also clutched the hair of the other woman to hinder her escape.
The incident took place at a branch of PKO Bank Polski in Przemysl, south-eastern Poland, on Tuesday, December 6.
A young woman had entered the bank branch, pulled a knife on a female employee, and demanded cash.
Footage filmed inside the branch shows the assailant, later identified as 26-year-old Zoja P., holding the worker hostage by the hair.
A woman can be heard asking her: ‘Ma’am, what are you doing?’ To which she replies: ‘I’m robbing the bank.’
The woman then asks: ‘Why?’ To which Zoja P. simply replies: ‘Because.’
The assailant can then be seen stuffing PLN 12,500 – £2,300 – in cash, which she had been handed moments earlier, into a large bag.
But then, seemingly out of nowhere, an elderly woman who had crept up behind her strikes her multiple times in the back with her walking stick.
Zoja P. is briefly dazed before others step in and overpower her.
One of those who grabs her can be heard shouting: ‘Grab the knife!’ A man in a suit then wrests the weapon from her and hands it to another woman.
The staff then discuss calling the police and are informed officers are on their way.
Officials later arrived on the scene and arrested the young woman before remanding her in custody.
She was later found to be a dual Ukrainian and Russian national and unregistered with Polish authorities.
She admitted to a charge of robbery with a dangerous instrument and claimed to prosecutors that she had tried to rob the bank because she needed money to return to Moscow.
As part of the investigation, she will undergo a psychiatric assessment. If found guilty and of sound mind, she could face a minimum of three years in prison.
Spokeswoman Marta Petkowska of the District Prosecutor’s Office in Przemysl said of the unlikely hero in the tale: ‘Undoubtedly, in this whole situation, the elderly lady who reacted at the right time and thwarted the attack deserves praise.’
No one in the bank at the time of the incident was injured.
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