Police have released CCTV images of a thief who snatched a woman's handbag as she prayed in church on Christmas Day
The incident happened at about 10.10am on Tuesday December 25 2012 just before mass at St Peter's Church in London Road, Gloucester.
In the footage the mean-spirited man is seen biding his time in the entrance area before moving into the nave, calmly picking up the handbag from a pew, hiding it under his coat and walking away.
Meanwhile the victim was praying at a crib at the side of the church completely oblivious.
PC Christine Pfister said: “This has left the victim feeling very distressed and anxious. Her car keys were in her bag at the time, and so she will no longer drive to church as she is nervous her car may be stolen.
“She also had to call a locksmith out on Christmas Day to change her locks. She has also reported seeing this male again in the area, and so she remains very nervous.
“Please call us if you recognise this man or know anything about this crime.”
Anyone with information is urged to call 101, quoting incident 110 of December 25.