A woman with learning difficulties has been left without her ‘lifeline’ mobile phone after what is believed to have been a targeted theft.
Roxanne Simmons, 29, of Chaulden, Hemel Hempstead had been in the town centre Hemel Café with a group of friends – who all have learning difficulties – on Sunday.
While the Sunnyside Rural Trust worker – who also suffers from severe epilepsy – had her back turned to pay, it is believed her brand new iPhone 4s was snatched from the group’s table.
Roxanne’s mum Kathy, 56, said: “The phone was my daughter’s lifeline, she spends her whole life on Facebook and needs it to let me know where she is and whether she has got on the bus safely. It is her safety net.
“For someone to take any phone from a table when the owner is still around is disgusting, but to target a group of people with learning difficulties – she was hysterical about it.”
Roxanne, who also volunteers at a care home in her spare time, told the HeraldExpress she would like to thank her friends for helping her, and for confronting a group of young male customers in the café about the theft before they allegedly ran away laughing.
Investigating officer PC Matthew Cann said: “The victim of this theft may have been targeted because of her vulnerability. She relied heavily on her phone and as a result is understandably very upset about her loss.
“There was a group of teenagers in the café at around the time the phone was believed to have gone missing and I would like to speak to them because they may have information that would help progress our investigation.”
Call police on the non-emergency number 101 with information.