It has gotten so bad, you cannot even afford to be friendly, anymore. "It seems like somebody was just doing their regular grocery shopping," explained Chattanooga Police Sergeant Daniel Jones, "and as they were grocery shopping, these two ladies come up beside her and begin to talk to her."
Police say they approached this week's victim in the aisle at Whole Foods on the North Shore. They proceeded to talk her up, a nice conversation for several minutes, asking and answering questions about different items. In this part of the country, we are known for our hospitality. "As they're in this deep conversation," Sgt. Jones continued, "one of them actually reaches in and grabs a wallet out of this lady's purse."
That was something the victim did not realize it until she got to the check-out counter. "Once she couldn't find her wallet," said Jones, "she kind of linked it back, if you will; called her husband. Her husband started checking credit cards and whatnot and found that one of the credit cards had been used already at Walmart."
That was less than an hour later and that is where we get our surveillance pictures. They used the victim's credit cards to buy gift cards at Walmart, then strolled on their merry way.
There are lessons to be learned here. For example, do not stop being friendly but, do keep a close eye on your property at all times. "You don't need to be suspicious of everyone," Jones suggested, "but, take care of your personal stuff. Especially if you're in the grocery store and you're shopping and you've got your pocketbook. And if it's standing wide open, it's gonna be a whole lot easier for someone to come in and get something out of them."
Take a good look at the pictures of the women from Walmart. Their bright sun dresses make them hard to miss. They were seen coming and going in a silver Ford Focus.
Their nonchalant attitude indicates this was probably not their first crime. "If they've done this before," Jones said, "then, we definitely need to catch these two. Because, obviously, they're gonna prey on someone else."
Up to a thousand dollars is waiting for the right piece of information in this case. All tipsters maintain complete anonymity. Call Crime Stoppers: 698-3333
An officer may answer the phone or return your call, but he will never ask your identity.