TV judge Robert Rinder has spoken of his sense of “overwhelming sadness” for a group of thieves who stole his mobile phone in north London
The barrister said he had his phone “grabbed” from his hand during the mugging, which took place near Finchley Road Tube station on Wednesday (24 March) evening.
Revealing details of the robbery on Twitter, Rinder said three “boys” on bikes wearing balaclavas grabbed the device and laughed as he pleaded with them to let it go.
But the famous judge, 42, who stars in his own show ITV’s Judge Rinder, said once his initial anger had subsided he only felt sorry for the youths.
He wrote: “After the rage, I feel an overwhelming sense of sadness for these boys because I’ve seen where their path leads.
“In the meantime we need to champion, train & fully resource our brave police officers – who come from EVERY background – to work with ALL communities to protect us.”
‘Others are less lucky’
Rinder said the thieves, who were wearing balaclavas, “laughed as I shouted to drop it”.
“I’m in shock but am insured & privileged,” he added.
“Others are less lucky. Help me find these people & stop them.”
Rinder has offered a financial reward in return for information leading to the group being tracked down.
Speaking to the Evening Standard about the mugging, the barrister added: “After the limited flush of rage (now gone) I feel an overwhelming sense of sadness for these boys, that this is where they are.
“I hope that they’ll find something else for their lives. How sad they must be; they don’t know the path they’re on. I honestly hope that they’ll find purpose, joy and something lawful to do before they get to the end of the path because I’ve seen — after years of criminal work — what lies there.”
The Metropolitan Police said officers are investigating a report of a theft at around 8.40pm on Wednesday in Finchley Road.
A statement said: “Three males dressed in black approached the victim and took his mobile phone. Inquiries are ongoing. No arrests at this early stage.”
Messages of support
A number of famous faces sent messages to Rinder after the mugging, offering their support.
Channel 4 News presenter Krishnan Guru-Murthy tweeted: “Main thing is you’re ok. Tried texting you but…..doh. Call if you need anything.”
Singer Beverley Knight added: “I am so sorry Robert. I don’t care about privilege, nothing about what happened to you is ok.”