01/07/2011 11:36 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Sports' Day Winning Schoolgirl Gives Chase To Handbag Thieves

A gang of handbag thieves were thwarted by a ten-year-old schoolgirl fresh from her school sports' day 100m sprint!

Eloise Leonard was walking home after her sports day with her parents, Tony and Deb, when she spotted four youths rifling through handbags in a park.

The plucky schoolgirl challenged the gang, and, as they took off, raced after them.

Her parents followed in hot pursuit, her dad phoning the police as they all gave chase.

A helicopter was scrambled along with patrol cars close to St Andrews Park, in Chelmsford, Essex.

Eloise's proud mum told reporters:

'There was no stopping her. I tried to keep up as Tony rang the police on his mobile. They kept looking back astonished to see her running after them, they dropped one of the handbags.'

'She flagged down a passing police car but the officers took a while to believe that such a young girl had chased the thieves.'

Eloise said: 'It was great to win my race and then catch the thieves. Best of all, they didn't have a gun or a knife.'

Two teenagers aged 16 and 17 were arrested on suspicion of theft. The police are still searching for two others.

Well done Eloise! HOW brave?!