'Predatory' man jailed after artist, 87, robbed at her Camden home
PUBLISHED: 15:37 15 December 2017 | UPDATED: 09:21 19 December 2017
A 'predatory' robber has been jailed for eight years after leaving an 87-year-old artist fighting for her life in her Camden home.
Andrew Alexander followed Stella Magarshak into the communal area of her flat in Albert Street, Camden Town, at about 8pm on November 22 last year as she returned home from shopping for groceries.
When the much-loved former art teacher, who had taught at King Alfred School in Golders Green, asked him who he was there to see he grabbed her handbag and made off.
The unmarried pensioner went to tell a relative upstairs where she then collapsed.
Ms Magarshak was rushed in a critical condition to the Royal Free hospital where doctors found she had suffered from a brain haemorrhage, its cause unknown.
After months of treatment Ms Magarshak, who grew up in Hampstead and has exhibited in Lauderdale House, was discharged but now needs 24 hour palliative care.
Days after the attack her neice, Emily Morris, told the Ham&High of the family’s shock.
Speaking at the time Ms Morris said: “This idea that just because you’re old, you’re dependant. She wasn’t at all.”
Ms Magarshak looked after her extended family in a penthouse between two houses in Albert Street where she moved in the 1970s to care for her late sister’s six children. Ms Morris said her aunt, who studied at New End Primary School, was “still incredibly active”.
Alexander was found with property he had stolen from Ms Magarshak when he was arrested on the day of a second attack on a pensioner in Chiswick.
The 37-year-old, of Sutton Lane South, Chiswick, was found guilty at Kingston Crown Court on Friday, September 15 of the burglary of Ms Magarshak and robbery of an 84-year-old woman. He was sentenced at the same court last Friday to eight years in jail.
DC Brett Jones said: “I would like to thank all of those who have assisted in this investigation. Alexander’s crimes have had a devastating effect on his victims. His actions were both callous and predatory.
“I hope this sentence will bring some satisfaction and relief to the victims, their families, and the public. Alexander is a man who preys on the most vulnerable. I am glad he has been brought to justice,” he added.