Car crime plagues Jewish areas in Manchester

By Jonathan Kalmus, November 4, 2008

Car crime is plaguing Jewish areas in north Manchester. A Whitefield man has been left shaken after masked thieves stole his black BMW from outside his home.

The 57-year-old victim, who does not want to be named, was left unharmed after three men dressed in dark clothes and balaclavas demanded his car keys when he left the vehicle to open the garage on Park Lane. The assailants then sped off at high speed.

"Only one came first and shouted ‘give me your keys'. Suddenly two others appeared, so I just threw them the keys. It only took about a minute," said the victim.

"They weren't aggressive, but I didn't have much choice with three yobbos in a dark alleyway."
Police have not found the BMW and no arrests have been made.

"After the way I saw them driving off in it, I'm not sure I want it back. I'll be a lot more vigilant in the future. I don't particularly feel safe, but I'll probably feel better in a few weeks," the victim added.

The robbery is one of a spate of thefts occurring in Jewish areas in north Manchester. Over half of the 22 car thefts in Bury between September and October have occurred in Whitefield and Prestwich.

Detectives are treating the theft as an isolated incident but a police spokesman admitted a high volume of crime has been recorded. Bury CID are appealing for information from the public and say enquiries are ongoing. They are also warning members of the public not to leave car keys on show near windows and front doors.

Last updated: 1:25pm, November 4 2008