Renton police warn of purse thieves targeting women in grocery store parking lots

RENTON, Wash. – Detectives are warning women that thieves are targeting purses at local grocery stores.

The crooks have a very special method and take advantage of something most people do every time they shop.

The crimes have happened in Renton's Walmart and Fred Meyer parking lots. Cops said the crooks count on women to put their purse into the car, and then they strike when shoppers walk off to return the grocery cart.

“It’s horrible,” said shopper Ana Del. “It’s kind of really scary to think about.”

Renton police said the suspects pull their car next to unsuspecting victims and strike when their backs have turned.

“They’re likely just looking for somebody that is coming to their car full of groceries,” said Renton Police Commander David Leibman.

The suspects involved in the thefts are described as two Asian males in their late teens or early twenties driving a 4-door, silver vehicle similar to an Acura.

Investigators stressed that shoppers should not leave valuables inside vehicles for any length of time.