Belfast Telegraph

Plucky sea dog Richard still defiant after knife-wielding thugs burgle and batter him

A defiant pensioner who was beaten by burglars has vowed not to let the experience scare him.

Richard McMillen (71) said he wanted to warn others about the violent burglary, but said he was “not afraid” of the men who attacked him.

The former merchant seaman was in bed when the burglars entered his Mossley Crescent home in Newtownabbey at around 8pm on Wednesday.

Hearing a noise, he thought it was his pet cats, but then two men — dressed in dark clothes with their hoods up — entered his bedroom.

“They said ‘we’re from the PSNI and we’re looking for drugs and money’, and then they attacked me,” said Mr McMillen.

He managed to fight back and get to his feet before one of the men pulled out a knife and threatened him with it.

“I pulled him towards me to ‘nut’ him but that’s when he pulled the knife,” he said.

“I backed off and that’s when I lost my balance and they got me.”

The two men held him down on the bed and beat him across the legs with metal sticks, believed to be golf clubs.

Demanding to be told of any money in the house, Mr McMillen told them to try underneath the stairs, but when he ran down after them they had fled.

The pensioner — who suffers from sciatic pain in his legs — has been left with bruises to both knees, but said it was “nothing to worry about”.

He said far from being fearful, he was “raging I couldn’t get at them”.

He added: “I’m not afraid of them. I’m angry, but I’m trying to get cool.

“I would love to get revenge, that’s not right what they did. There will be a lot of people shaking in fear because of this.”

The two men, thought to be about 6ft tall, made off with around £160, including £60 Mr McMillen had set aside to give to animal charities.

He said it looked as if the robbers had got in through his back door, which had been unlocked at the time, and searched the house for valuables before coming upstairs to his room — even going so far as drawing the curtains and pulling out the telephones downstairs.

He described their approach as “methodical” and “accomplished”.

“They were cool at the time — except when I attacked,” he said.

“It seemed as if they have been doing this thing quite often, they knew what they were doing.

“But I found the finger of his glove upstairs afterwards, it came off when I tried to pull him towards me. I told the police and they collected it.”

He said he wanted to warn other pensioners to be on their guard and to make sure they lock their doors at all times of the day.

He added: “Some other person who gets attacked might not be able, and they could have been seriously injured or killed.

“I want to make as much noise as possible about it to stop them in their tracks, they won’t think it’s so easy.”

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph