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Elderly mugging victim: ‘I couldn’t protect my wife’

Updated: October 12, 2012 7:04PM

An 86-year-old World War II veteran whose wife was mugged in front of him outside the casino in Aurora said his biggest regret was that he couldn’t protect his wife, who suffered a broken hip and arm in the brazen attack.

Frank Macchione of Schaumburg was walking with his 82-year-old wife near New York Street and Stolp Avenue in Aurora when a man grabbed the woman’s purse and shoved her to the ground about 3:40 p.m. Sunday, according to Aurora police.

Macchione said that after they parked in a garage at the Hollywood Casino, a “young man jumped out and grabbed my wife, threw her down and grabbed her purse.”

The robbery happened by the casino’s rear door. Macchione said they were probably mugged because the thief thought they would be an “easy target.”

Macchione, who walks with a cane because of a stroke two years ago, said he was holding his wife’s arm and ended up falling into a railing.

Paramedics took his wife to a hospital with serious injuries, police said. Macchione was not injured.

“I couldn’t protect my wife,” he said.

A passerby heard screaming and saw the suspect running south towards Galena Boulevard, police said. He gave chase, causing the suspect to drop the purse. But the robber did take items from the purse worth about $40, police said.

He is described as a black man in his late teens or early 20s, 5-foot-7 to 5-foot-8 and 150- 170 pounds. He was wearing a dark knit hat, blue or black jacket, and dark pants.

Macchione said he has been to the casino many times and has “never” seen any security outside, “which would have probably have deterred this young man.”

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