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Shoppers watch as woman attacked

PUBLISHED: 19:53 26 February 2002 | UPDATED: 11:26 03 March 2010

SHOPPERS stood and watched as a teenager kicked a pregnant mother in an unprovoked attack in Ipswich town centre.

Tina Murnane - who is five months pregnant - feared for her child as she was approached by four youths on the corner of the High Street and Westgate Street.

SHOPPERS stood and watched as a teenager kicked a pregnant mother in an unprovoked attack in Ipswich town centre.

Tina Murnane – who is five months pregnant – feared for her child as she was approached by four youths on the corner of the High Street and Westgate Street.

The incident has left Mrs Murnane frightened to go into town alone and was made worse by the fact she had previously suffered a

miscarriage.

The 35-year-old spoke out to warn others to be on their guard in the town centre.

She said: "To be pounced on like that out of the blue is such a shock. You don't expect that to happen when you are minding your own business and doing a spot of shopping.

"There were four teenagers. One was doing the kicking.

"It was like a kung fu kick. It was directed towards my stomach area, but luckily I had a bag.

"My sister came to defend me and she was kicked. My sister, Fran, was kicked then he kicked me again. He kicked me twice and Fran twice as well.

"I could have been kicked down on the street. I

couldn't defend myself in my fragile state.

"I was in a terrible state and worried about my unborn child. I have had a miscarriage before and

doctors have told me to take it easy.

"I have had a threat of a miscarriage with this one as well. I have already been in hospital so I was worried.

"I really thought I was going to have a heart attack in the street. It was the shock. It was a totally

unprovoked attack."

She had gone into town with her sister to get some fresh air and to do a spot of shopping.

It was one of her first proper trips out in the last 16 weeks because she was

feeling so sick.

The pair were approached by a group of four youths – two girls and two boys aged 14 to 15. One boy was doing the kicking while the others looked on and laughed. Even bystanders looked on.

Mrs Murnane, who lives in the Bramford Road area and has a two-year-old son, said: "The worst thing is this man just stood there and watched the whole thing.

"I couldn't believe it. No one came up to ask if we were all right.

"I wouldn't have had any strength to take on this boy. Anyway if I would have laid a finger on him I would be up for juvenile assault.

"It would be me in court and he would have got away scot free. There is just no deterrent for people today.

"I hope by speaking out it will bring it home to people to be on the lookout. It was a scary incident that I just don't want repeated."

Her father, Thomas Moorehouse, 56, said in the long run the town will suffer because people won't feel safe.

The boy who kicked out was described as 5ft 2ins, wearing a baseball cap and cream sweater with dark hair and blue eyes.

The other boy was 5ft 7ins, wearing a cream sweater and cream trousers. All four were thought to be about 14 or 15 years old.

n If you have any

information or witnessed the incident which happened around 4.30pm on Sunday, February 17, contact Ipswich police on 01473 383100.

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