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 Jail for Darlington handbag robber


​A police investigation has led to a man being jailed for 20 months for robbing a woman and stealing her handbag.

The woman was walking to meet a friend near North Road Post Office – an area she was unfamiliar with - when Richard Clark rode up to her on his bike.

He told the woman he would help her locate her friend, but instead directed her to a secluded area where he dragged her to the floor and grabbed her handbag. 

The 33-year-old then cycled off with the handbag, leaving the distressed woman on the ground.

Detectives carried out a number of enquiries, including reviewing CCTV footage and carrying out a VIPER identification procedure, which identified Clark as the suspect.

Clark, of Edmund Street, Darlington, was arrested and charged with robbery. He initially denied having any involvement in the robbery, but later pleaded guilty to the offence, which took place on May 18.

He appeared at Durham Crown Court on Friday (July 3) where he was jailed for 20 months.

Detective Constable Helen Hudson, from Darlington CID, said: “This was a traumatic incident for the victim, who was trying to locate her friend in an area she was unfamiliar with.

“Clark offered to help her, but instead led her to a secluded area and robbed her, which understandably left her extremely shocked and distressed.

“We worked hard to identify Clark and bring him to justice. I hope that this result will provide the victim with some comfort, knowing that he is now off the streets and behind bars.”