Teenager uses umbrella to fight off knife attacker who tied him up in Hampstead home

George Zelonka used this umbrella to chase intruder

George Zelonka used this umbrella to chase intruder - Credit: Nigel Sutton

A teenager has told how he fought off a masked intruder who bound his wrists with cable ties at knifepoint before pulling out a plastic bag and threatening to kill him in a chilling attack which resembles the plot of a TV serial killer drama.

George Zelonka used this umbrella to chase intruder

George Zelonka used this umbrella to chase intruder - Credit: Nigel Sutton

A level student George Zelonka escaped by breaking free from the ties, wrestling with his attacker and then chasing him down the street with an umbrella.

George, 19, told how he was alone at his home in Telegraph Hill and working at his desk when he heard someone come through his bedroom door.

He said: “I swung round and saw this figure wearing a mask and with a huge knife, he charged towards me and pushed me to the floor.

“He said that if I moved he would kill me. He had his knee on my back and tied up my hands with cable wires. I felt helpless. I couldn’t do anything or reach my phone.”


You may also want to watch:


He said: “Then I heard a rustle and realised he was getting out a plastic bag. I thought this is it. He’s going to kill me. Something just flipped. I was not going to let him suffocate me.

“I found this strength and I used my wrists to break through the cable ties.

Most Read

“I was screaming: ‘You don’t know who you are f**king with.

“You have picked the wrong guy.’”

The attacker lunged at the teenager and they began wrestling.

“We had this face off. We rotated round and then I was shouting and threatening him.”

“Then suddenly everything changed. He gestured to the door and asked me ‘shall I go then?’

He said his attacker turned and ran out of the bedroom but he chased after him down the stairs.

He said: “I was screaming ‘I am going to get you now. You are dead’. At the front door I grabbed an umbrella. I had no shoes on but I chased him up the street and onto Hampstead Heath.

“THe Heath was all rocky and I had bare feet. I didn’t feel safe going into such an isolated area,” he said.

George then returned home where the shock hit him. He phoned his father who was at work in Belsize Park.

Father Paul Goldstein said: “He was hysterical then. I called police and rushed home.”

A huge police operation followed with chief police officers, the head of CID, detectives and mounted officers arriving at the house.

Mr Goldstein said: “when I arrived home there were more police than I have ever seen. George was amazing. He was so brave and I am so proud of him.

“i have no idea what this guy’s intentions were. But it doesn’t seem like he was there to steal anything. It seems more sinister than that. You don’t need a large knife or cable ties for a burglary,”he said.

Police were today scouring CCTV footage and gathering forensic evidence following.

The chilling attack resembles the plot of ITV serial drama Marcella, where a serial killer uses cable ties to bind victims.

PC Edward Bromilow, of Hampstead police, said three patrol cars, mounted police and senior CID officers arrived at the scene following the attack at 5:45pm on Tuesday.

“They were there to control the scene and launch a search of the area.”

Due to bad weather the police helicopter could not take off to join the search and the suspect escaped.

He is described as East Asian appearance, around 5ft5ins tall wearing a dark jacket with a silver hood and a baseball cap. before suffocating them with a plastic bag.

Anyone with information should call police on 101 and quote the crime reference number 2311862/16

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter