Police: One suspect behind rash of attacks on elderly

Latest victim, an 80-year-old US immigrant living in Jerusalem, released from hospital.

Beaten old woman 224.88 (photo credit: Channel 10)
Beaten old woman 224.88
(photo credit: Channel 10)
An 80-year-old Jerusalem woman who immigrated to Israel from New York seven years ago was discharged from a Jerusalem hospital over the weekend after being assaulted and robbed in her home on Friday, hospital officials said Sunday. "I have felt better," Muriel Fronman said, 48 hours after she was attacked, beaten and robbed at the entrance to her central Jerusalem home, in the third such attack in the city in the last month. Police suspect that a single young male assailant is behind all three recent violent robberies of elderly women in Jerusalem. Fronman had just returned from the supermarket with weekend shopping when the young robber, his face covered by a ski mask, forced his way into her flat, and then slammed her head on the floor several times before making off with $100 and her wallet, her son David Fronman recounted Sunday. The lightly injured woman managed to make her way to a neighbor's flat to summon police and an ambulance, he said. "The truth is she always felt much safer here than in New York," Fronman said. "We never dreamed that specifically here she would get attacked so viciously." The attacker did not speak English or Hebrew, and was apparently a Russian-speaker, he added. In Jerusalem, where crime is markedly lower than most major Western cities, Fronman never had such a close encounter with a criminal in the past, although one time she had money taken from her purse at the Mahaneh Yehuda market, her son said. The incident came just one day after a 75-year-old woman was attacked at the entrance to her downtown flat after she opened the door to her home. In that incident, the woman's 80-year-old husband managed to scare off the attacker. Last month, a 79-year-old woman who lived alone was savagely assaulted and robbed in her Jerusalem apartment in the city's Kiryat Yovel neighborhood. The assailant in all three brazen daytime attacks remains at large. "What we want to see is this guy caught and put behind bars for a long time," Fronman said.