Officers save mugging victim from Piraiki sea

Two policemen saved the life of a Piraeus woman who had been knocked into the sea and left to drown yesterday morning by a man who stole her bag. Officers Pavlos Pabilios, 43, and Panayiotis Bessiris, 37, had been on car patrol duty in the coastal Piraiki area to the east of the main harbor when they saw a woman floundering in the waves off the Stavros point. They quickly dove into the chilly waters and pulled Georgia Pitsikali, 54, to safety. Pitsikali, a house cleaner, was taken to hospital in a state of shock. She told the two officers a foreign-looking man had grabbed her bag and pushed her into the sea. Women are frequently attacked by bag-snatchers, many of whom target drivers. Although attacks have steadily declined over the past five years, in Attica alone there were 3,885 incidents in 2002 – down from 4,495 in 1998.