Rome traffic warden attacked by pickpockets

Rome traffic warden attacked by pickpockets
The attack happened at the metro station close to the Spanish Steps in Rome. Photo: Weldon Kennedy/Flickr
Four teenage pickpockets attacked a traffic warden at an underground station by the Spanish Steps in Rome after they were asked to stop smoking.

Claudia Macri was insulted and spat at by the four girls and then kicked and punched after she followed them in the busy underground station, Rome's city council said in a statement.

A passer-by intervened and held two of the attackers, while another was caught by the warden and the fourth escaped.

Macri told Il Messaggero newspaper that she also suspected the teenagers of robbing passengers. 

“I tried to warn the passengers, I shouted in English ‘watch out for pickpockets!’” she said.

The girls were later captured after they were indentified by a group of tourists for allegedly stealing €500 in cash, four credit cards and a camera. A court has ordered for them to be sent to a youth rehabilitation centre. 

Macri said she often faces abuse at work. “This is not the first time. They usually spit at me, which I can’t stand."

Ignazio Marino, Rome's mayor, praised Macri for her commitment, courage and determination, and described the attack as "unacceptable", Il Messaggero said.

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