When Shannon Armstrong answered a late-night knock on her back door, a thief snuck in through the front door and stole her handbag.
When Shannon Armstrong answered a late-night knock on her back door, a thief snuck in through the front door and stole her handbag. Alistair Brightman

Doorknock a prelude to robbery

WHEN Shannon Armstrong got up to answer a knock at her back door late on Saturday night, she never imagined a scam would be waiting for her on the other side.

She thought it could be her heavily pregnant neighbour asking for help.

But instead, when she opened the door about 11pm, a pair of strangers were standing there.

"Does Mark live here?" the man asked, while the woman hung back.

As Ms Armstrong was explaining that she didn't know anyone called "Mark", a third party snuck in through another door and stole her handbag.

"It took less than a minute," Ms Armstrong said.

"Just long enough to keep me distracted and then they left.

"I only noticed my bag was missing because I'd left a can of coke next to it and that had been knocked over.

"My front door was open and the bag was gone."

There was only about $10 cash in her purse, but the Hervey Bay mum has now lost her house and car keys, bank cards, photos, birth certificates and medication.

"My whole life is in that handbag," she said.

"It's just heartbreaking."

Ms Armstrong has had to get her locks changed and says she also will have to fork out huge costs to get an auto electrician to take the immobiliser off her car.

"I'm happy that my bank card and Medicare card can be replaced but I can't get a new licence because I don't have any ID," she said.

The brazen robbery has left the Torquay woman shocked and terrified her 13-year-old son.

"I've been a single mum for 20 years and I've never felt unsafe.

"But I do now."

Ms Armstrong said the man at her door was about 180cm tall and aged in his late 20s. He was wearing a white or light-coloured cap and a white T-shirt with three bold letters on it.

She did not get a good look at the woman.

"They got me and I feel like such an idiot.

"I just want people to know it's happening and to be aware of it."


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