TALLMADGE, Ohio — Police are warning women to watch your purses, even in your own car.
According to police, 41-year-old Jarod Lauderdale stole purses in several cities in a very unusual way.
“This time of year, thefts pick up that part of it is not unusual. But this is a different approach. We don’t usually see this,” said Tallmadge Police Chief Ron Williams.
Tallmadge police said it happened in their city, twice in as many days and in broad daylight.
The first happened Saturday afternoon in the Kmart parking lot.
Police said a 73-year-old woman came out of the store, got into her vehicle, put her purse on the passenger seat and that’s when the man allegedly opened the passenger side door and stole it.
The same thing played out the next day.
This time a 72-year-old woman in a Giant Eagle parking lot.
“It’s a very traumatic thing,” said the victim, who did not want to be identified.
She said she noticed a man sitting in a white Chevrolet, like he was waiting for someone. She said he then pulled into the parking spot next to her, turned the engine off and then started it again and thought that was strange.
”All of a sudden the passenger side door opened and this guy reached in and grabbed my purse, jumped back into his car and took off,” she said.
Lauderdale is charged with robbery and theft.