Woman, 80, knocked off scooter fighting assailant in Gloucester City robbery

John E. Reed is charged in the robbery of an 80-year-old woman in Gloucester City. (Courtesy of Gloucester City police)

An 80-year-old woman was knocked off her scooter when she tried to fight off a man robbing her of her purse in Gloucester City.

Police allege that 22-year-old John E. Reed approached the woman from behind while she was riding her electric scooter on the 500 block of Cumberland Street at about 11:15 a.m. Sunday.

Reed grabbed the woman's purse and tried to flee, but the woman wouldn't let go, according to Gloucester City police.

He then pushed the woman, knocking her off the scooter, and ran away with the purse.

A witness called police and Reed was apprehended about two blocks away, near South Broadway and Somerset streets, authorities said.

Cops said the victim and witness identified Reed as the suspect, and he later admitted to the robbery in a statement to police.

The 80-year-old victim suffered minor injuries and was treated at the scene. Her purse was recovered from the roof of a garage on the 500 block of Somerset Street and was returned to her.

Reed faces charges of robbery, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of hypodermic syringes. He is in custody at the Camden County Jail after failing to post $25,000 bail.

Contact Emily Babay at 215-854-2153 or ebabay@philly.com. Follow @emilybabay on Twitter.

Contact the Breaking News Desk at 215-854-2443; BreakingNewsDesk@philly.com. Follow @phillynews on Twitter.