A NURSE who was punched, stamped on and kicked by two muggers as she waited for a bus outside a hospital wearing full NHS uniform yesterday said the attack had ended her career.
Lorna Hobson, 65, who was on her way home after a shift at the Northern General Hospital in Sheffield, said she thought she was going to die during the beating by the two thugs and said the attack left her in agony on the ground.
The pair ran off with her handbag, while Mrs Hobson was left with injuries all over her body, including deep bruises on her face and across her ribs.
Mrs Hobson said: “It was obvious I was a nurse. I feel angry they didn’t see my uniform. I was wearing a big coat with NHS written on it, but that didn’t make any difference to these two men,” she said.
“They didn’t have any respect for me or my uniform. I just find it so hard to comprehend. I am still in a lot of pain and I am still traumatised, I still can’t believe it happened to me.”
Mrs Hobson, a healthcare assistant for the hospital’s evening and night service, was attacked on December 28 at around 10pm after she had finished a four-hour evening shift.
The married mother of three, who has five grandchildren, said she had been in the nursing profession for 22 years
She added: “We’d had a lovely evening, we had cut up the Christmas cake and had a nice time. I was really happy when I left.”
She walked from the hospital in Fir Vale to the bus stop at the junction of Herries Road and Norwood Road where she waited for the number 87 to take her to her home in Lowedges.
“I walked down the path to the bus stop and I stood inside the bus shelter which is brightly lit. I noticed two youths across the road. They passed me and they must have come up behind me,” she said.
“One of them said something about the time. I remember looking at my watch and then they jumped on me and grabbed my bag. I screamed and they punched me full in the face.
“They dragged me out of the shelter and up a gravel path which was nearby. I was screaming, it was dark and I couldn’t see anything. I just remember screaming and the kicks the punches and the stamping.”
Mrs Hobson said the robbers left, possibly because they had been disturbed, but then amazingly came back to continue the assault.
She added: “I remember lying on the ground and thinking ‘They’ve gone, I’m safe and I’m alive’ but then I saw them coming back and they started it all over again.
“I thought it was going to be the end and they were going to kill me.”
The beating finally stopped when a woman passer-by intervened. The muggers fled with Mrs Hobson’s shoulder bag which had her purse containing £60 and her house keys, along with medical paperwork.
The rescuer helped Mrs Hobson to her feet and took her back to the Northern General’s casualty department.
She added: “After all that it’s all a bit of a blur.
“I don’t feel I hate the people who hurt me, but for 22 years I have been a nurse and I have avoided anything happening to me. I doubt very much that I will be going back to work.”
The attack on Mrs Hobson happened just four days after church organist Alan Greaves, 68, was beaten in High Green, Sheffield, as he was on his way to midnight mass. He died on December 28 from his injuries.
Police investigating his murder last night said a 21-year-old man from High Green had been arrested on suspicion of murder.
Detectives said they had an “excellent response” to an appeal for information on Monday.
Yesterday the county’s newly elected police and crime commissioner Shaun Wright also appealed for the public’s help. Mr Wright said: “While it has been an extremely difficult time for Mr Greaves’s family they will know from speaking with members of Det Supt Matt Fenwick’s team, no effort will be spared in bringing the perpetrators of this heinous act to justice.
“A large dedicated team of detectives and staff are working closely with the High Green community and have already conducted more than 200 house-to-house enquiries and spoken to in excess of 300 individuals.
“I am in regular contact with senior officers and I can assure members of the community, and more significantly, the members of Mr Greaves’s family, that South Yorkshire Police is doing everything it can.”
Detectives investigating the incident involving Mrs Hobson said the two men who attacked her are described as being between 16 and 20.
They were both around 6ft, with dark complexions and a skinny build.