West Yorkshire Police are appealing for information following a series of recent street robberies in the Hyde Park and Woodhouse area.
Various incidents occurred between April 16 and April 23, with WYP reporting that many of the victims were students.
A number of the robberies were carried out on Wednesday 20th April. First to be reported involved a 21-year old woman who wa walking along Hyde Park Road at approximately 9:40pm with a friend when she was approached by two men on a dark-coloured scooter, who grabbed her handbag and sped off. Three hours later, at around 12:15am on Thursday 21st April, a 30-year-old woman was approached by two men on a bike on Rampart Road, who proceeded to snatch her handbag.
Approximately fifteen minutes later, three males targeted a 25-year-old man in Craven Road at about 12:30am. After searching his pockets, they stole cash, keys and a Nokia Lumia phone.
The victims have all described the suspects as being white, aged 18 to 20, skinny and between 5ft 6ins and 6ft tall. They all reportedly wore hoodies and had their faces covered.
Earlier that week, at around 3:20am on Sunday 17th April, a 24-year old man was robbed as he walked alone across Woodhouse Moor. He was approached by three males who demanded he hand over his phone. The victim was punched and kicked until he was forced to let go of his rucksack.
Detective Inspector Neil Thompson, of the Leeds District Crime Team, said: “We are making extensive enquiries to trace the suspects involved in these incidents which we believe may be linked, given the similar circumstances and the locations.
“We are focusing increased attention on the area with patrols by both uniformed and plain-clothed officers and are targeting known offenders.
“We would like to hear from anyone who has witnessed any of the incidents or who has any information that could assist the investigation.
“The majority of the victims have been students and some of these offences have taken place while walking alone in secluded places. We would ask that people give due consideration to their personal safety while out in public, particularly in the hours of darkness, and, where possible, avoid isolated places while we continue to do everything we can to catch the people responsible.”
Anyone with any information is asked to contact the Leeds District Crime Team via 101 quoting Operation Diarymount or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Students concerned about personal safety can contact the Advice Centre for help, and are encouraged to make use of the union night bus and local taxi services when travelling at night.