Purse stolen while woman pumped gas; 3 men wanted

SAPD: Victim unaware she was targeted by thieves; theft a lesson for others

By Jessie Degollado - Reporter, Joe Herrera - Photojournalist

SAN ANTONIO - Three men are accused of scouting a Northeast Side convenience store and finding an easy target to steal personal belongings, according to San Antonio police.

When asked how often that happens, San Antonio police spokesman Carlos Ortiz said, "It happens every day."

It did around 6 p.m. March 15 at the store near the corner of Eisenhauer Road and I-35 North.

Officer Ortiz said while a woman was gassing up her vehicle, a black truck drove up on the opposite side.

One of three men got out and "crouches down very low to be sort of out of view of the victim pumping gas," Ortiz said.

Ortiz said the man opened the door, grabbed the victim's purse and everything in it, and then all three drove off.

The woman was unaware anything had happened until soon after she drove away, Ortiz said.

Ortiz said while she was speaking with officers at the scene, the woman started getting notifications that her stolen credit cards were already being used.

The police report states the victim was "visibly upset ... due to the sensitive nature of the items stolen and the sentimental value."

Ortiz said there are lessons to be learned by her experience.

"Be vigilant of your surroundings," Ortiz said. "Even at the gas pump, have your doors locked. Do not leave valuables in plain sight."

Ortiz said convenience stores are, in a sense, an ideal hunting ground because customers are usually in a hurry and often distracted.

Thieves are "sort of like predators and all the prey keeps coming in," Ortiz said.

Anyone who recognizes the three men or the black truck is urged to contact the Police Department's East Side Property Crimes at 210-207-8854.

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