A 77-year-old woman was mugged in St Alban Road, Bedford, on Saturday evening.
The victim was carrying her blue bag over her shoulder when it was grabbed from behind pulling the elderly woman backwards.
It is thought that the strap broke and the offender ran off with the blue bag just after 5pm.
The thief, who was wearing a grey knee-length coat and hat, made off down St Alban Road into Kimbolton Road, turned right and was last seen near to St Augustine’s Road.
Det Con Jason Wheeler said: “This was a terrible crime. The elderly lady could have been seriously hurt in this attack and has been left without her cards, keys and phone.
“I am very keen on tracing anybody who may have recovered any of these items in the local area or anybody who saw this individual either in the area before the incident or running along St Augustine’s Road.”
The bag contained a black and red wallet containing the woman’s bank cards, Oyster card, rail card and bus pass as well as an orange diary, keys and a Nokia mobile telephone.
Anyone with information can contact Det Con Wheeler on 101 or text information to 07786 200011. Alternatively contact Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.