EVERYONE should protect the elderly and vulnerable against pickpockets.
The police have urged everyone to keep a lookout for the thieves who are targeting elderly people in Huddersfield town centre.
And they have drafted in police community support officers to back up bobbies on the beat and Kirklees street wardens in a blitz against the thieves.
Last week disabled war hero Gerald Heath, 83 - who is registered blind - and his 77-year-old wife, Jeanetta, were both targeted by a thieving couple who struck in the Queensgate Market and stole their purse and wallet.
The couple, who live in Netherton, said the thieves were very skilled and quick.
"People think it can't happen to them, but it can and does," said Mr Heath.
"I would urge people to take extra special care and be always on their guard. The people who did this to us are the lowest form of life."
Insp Dave Barnett, of Huddersfield police, said: "Despite repeated warnings, purse-dipping in Huddersfield town centre is still going on.
"These thieves are very slick and callous and we would urge everyone who shops or works in the town centre to be our eyes and ears.
"The pickpockets prey on the elderly and vulnerable, so please watch out for them.
"Shops and the police are linked by radio and we can get a fast response."
He added: "Always keep your purse or wallet in a zipped-up inside pocket.
"Never ever leave them on show in your shopping bag or in outside pockets."