Elderly woman dies after burglars force their way into her London flat

The 77-year-old collapsed while on the phone to 999, and she was given CPR by police who responded to the break-in at about 6pm on Tuesday in High Barnet, northeast London.

She was taken to hospital in a critical condition and died on Wednesday morning. Her family has been informed.

Police are investigating whether the burglary is linked to three other break-ins in the area.

Detective Chief Inspector Noel McHugh said: “Our focus now is catching the culprits behind this burglary which has contributed to the death of an elderly woman.

“Any burglary is an awful and harrowing experience which can leave many feeling uncomfortable in their own homes. This burglary has ended with the worst possible consequences. A wonderful elderly lady has died.

“With that in mind, I want to reach out and make a direct appeal to anyone from the criminal fraternity who has information to contact us.”

The suspects are both thin, white men in their 20s who were wearing woolly hats and dark clothing.

Chief Superintendent Simon Rose said: “These break-ins and the subsequent death of an elderly woman will no doubt cause concern and alarm to those in the area.

“Locals can expect to see an increased police presence in the area. We are there to help them and support the local community but need their help also.”

:: Anyone with information can contact police on 020 8785 8099, tweet @MetCC, or contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online.

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