Thieves smash windows, steal purses from cars, near Maymont

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - It's something you'll want to keep in mind. Crooks eyeing your belongings while you're visiting Richmond parks.

Police said two women found that out the hard way while visiting Maymont. It happened in broad daylight at 11 in the morning. Police tell me, both women left their purses in plain view inside their cars parked on Hampton Street right outside the park. They returned to find shattered windows and their purses gone.

A thief's dream come true! Cell phone, GPS, and bags within eyesight inside parked cars.

"I can't see my purse from right here, so I wouldn't think anybody else could," said Teresa Hall, a regular park visitor.

Luckily for Hall, it was still there, when she returned from a day in the park with her daughter. Not the case police said for two other women visiting Maymont Monday morning.

In broad daylight, twelve minutes apart, they reported their purses stolen. Both were parked in the 1700 block of Hampton Street.

"One was tucked in from behind the front seat between the two seats, one was just on the front seat," said Gene Lepley, with Richmond police.

Hall said she tries to keep from lugging around more than she can handle.

"I grab pretty much just my ID and credit card. I usually put my purse underneath the front seat of the car or underneath the back of it," said Hall.

Police want you to keep in mind that while you're away from your car the crooks are trying everything they can to get in. So don't make your car a target.

Cameo Davis doesn't chance it. Her stuff goes in the trunk.

"You never know. It's getting a little crazy nowadays. People don't have jobs, money they take the car too," said Davis.

A practice police said all should follow.

"It's beautiful weather. It brings the people out. It also brings out the other element that are preying on those people," said Lepley.

Hall said she won't repeat the habit.

"It definitely makes you think  twice so I probably won't be doing that anymore," said Hall.
Police tell me bike officers patrol the park and the area surrounding it.

If you have information about the two car break-ins, call Crime Stoppers at 780-1000.

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