By Mike Hellgren

BALTIMORE (WJZ)–An elderly man was coming back from the bank when police say somebody targeted him there and followed him home. The suspect then threw him down and took his money.

Mike Hellgren reports 85-year-old Harold Banks is strong, but he admits he was nervous when a man grabbed him, choked and robbed him outside his home in the 300 block of East Lafayette Street.

“Shaken, but not scared. It doesn’t matter. Age doesn’t matter. They’ll do it to anybody, old women, old men. It just doesn’t matter,” said Banks.

There are surveillance pictures of the man who police say preyed on Banks. There are cameras at the bank on Greenmount Avenue.

The suspect “watched the victim withdraw money, then followed him back in his home,” said Detective Jeremy Silbert, Baltimore City Police.

The suspect came right to Banks’ front door when he took the elderly man’s cash.

“I put my key in the lock, and once I put my key in the lock, I pulled it out, and I was forced inside my vestibule,” said Banks.

Harold Witherspoon is a longtime friend and neighbor of the victim and he says he’s also on alert.

“It’s been going on here for a while now,” Witherspoon said. “I believe there’s one predator in this neighborhood who just specifically targets older people.”

Police say the man behind the attack is 5 feet 8 inches tall, weighs 180 pounds, and is probably around 35 to 40 years old.

However, Banks is giving thanks that he wasn’t seriously injured in the attack, but he hopes the police catch the suspect.

Banks says he was riding in his mobility scooter when he got to his door and was pushed inside, and he says the robber knew the exact pocket to look for his money envelope.

At this point, investigators say they’re only looking for one suspect.

Anyone with information should call police in the Eastern District at 410-396-2433.


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