Date: 30 Apr 2004
Joan Ursula Craddock died after being mugged in Wanstead on Thursday 8 April 2004 at around 11.30am.
She had just collected her benefits from Wanstead Post Office when she was knocked to the ground by a man described as being a light-skinned black man about 5ft 9in tall.
After knocking her to the ground the man took her handbag and walked off but later came back and took her bus pass. Her bag had had £100 in it along with her son's benefit book which she had just got from the Post Office.
Her leg and shoulder were both broken in the assault. She was taken to Whipps Cross Hospital where she died about three weeks later on Tuesday 27 April 2004. Her post-mortem stated that she died from acute peritonitis caused by her injuries.
The police said that they thought that the same man had also mugged a 69-year-old woman in Woodford Green a few days earlier and also a 49-year-old woman in Wanstead the following day. The day after Joan Craddock was mugged two other women also had their handbags stolen in Wanstead. The women were aged 82 and 59.
Later on, on the day Joan Craddock was mugged, a woman went into the post office in Wanstead Pharmacy and handed in Joan Caddock's son's benefit book and the police said that they were interested in speaking to that person. The lady that had handed the book in was described as being about 70-years-old with grey hair and wearing glasses. The police said that the woman probably thought that she was doing a public duty and had not associated it with the murder.
Joan Craddock had been in the Land Army during the second world war.