Vernon Good Samaritans chase down purse snatching suspect

The purse was returned but the culprit slipped away.

A Vernon resident was dropping her children off at the Okanagan Boys and Girl Club – Vernon Jan. 29th shortly before 5:30 p.m.

When she returned to her vehicle, she noticed an unknown man in the passenger side door of her vehicle.

“She told police she yelled at the man, and he grabbed her purse from the front seat of the car and ran,” said Vernon RCMP spokesperson Gord Molendyk. “The suspect ran towards 32nd Street with the victim yelling out ‘help.’”

A woman down the street heard the cry for assistance. She yelled back and asked if that guy had stolen something from her.

The victim yelled back that he had stolen her purse.

The 35-year-old Vernon resident began to chase after the suspect on foot.

As they crossed 32nd Street, the woman’s husband was following her in their vehicle.

“The two Good Samaritans caught up to the male suspect and confronted him in the parking lot of Carl’s Junior,” said Molendyk. “The husband confronted the suspect, grabbed the purse from him and told him that they were calling the police.”

The woman continued to follow the man until he ducked into an alley off 39th Avenue.

Officers responded to the area within seconds and cordoned it off for the police service dog unit.

They were able to track the suspect to the back door of a residence in the 2700 block of 39th Avenue.

“It was obvious that the suspect had gone into this residence but nobody would answer the door,” said Molendyk. “With the time delay, there was a possibility the suspect was not there so our officers did not go into the residence.”

The suspect in this case was not apprehended, however because of the action by the two Good Samaritans, the purse and contents was recovered.



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