CCTV appeal after four purse thefts in Stevenage supermarkets
PUBLISHED: 14:49 13 April 2019 | UPDATED: 15:00 13 April 2019
CCTV images have been released following a series of purse thefts in Stevenage supermarkets where bank cards have been stolen and used.
Police would like to speak to the two men pictured, as they may have information which could assist the investigation.
The following incidents have been reported:
• On March 9 a purse was stolen from a woman in Asda (crime reference 41/22345/19)
• On March 27 a card was stolen from a woman in Waitrose (crime reference 41/28184/19)
• On April 5 cards were stolen from a woman at Sainsbury’s in Magpie Crescent (crime reference 41/31053/19)
• On April 5 a woman had her purse taken from her handbag in the front seat of her vehicle at Sainsbury’s Coreys Mill (crime reference 41/31319/19)
In at least two offences a distraction technique was used. The incidents are believed to be linked.
Officers would like to hear from anyone who can help identify either of the people pictured.
Officers have also released the following advice to help prevent you from becoming a victim:
• Keep your handbag on you, zipped with no valuable items on display (this includes your mobile phone). Do not leave it unattended.
• When paying for goods and to always ensure you shield your PIN number.
• Keep your handbag close to your body.
• In restaurants and cafés put your bag on your lap or on the floor between your feet with your foot on the strap. Alternatively place the strap through one leg of the chair.
• Never leave your bag in adjacent seats in theatres, pubs or on public transport.
• If using restrooms, do not place your handbag close to the door or side walls, particularly if there is a gap between the walls and the ground. It could be snatched from the outside.
• Do not carry large amounts of cash with you. Withdraw only money needed at the time.
• Look for ATMs located inside buildings, supermarkets or other busy locations.
• Be mindful of distractions, thieves working in pairs may attempt to divert your attention in order to steal your handbag or its contents.
• Attach your purse to your handbag with a secure cord and keep your mobile in a zipped internal pocket or on your person.
You can report information by calling the non-emergency number 101, quoting crime reference 41/28184/19 or report information online at www.herts.police.uk/Report.
Alternatively, you can stay anonymous by contacting Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or via their untraceable online form at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.