WALKER, Mich. — Another purse snatching at a West Michigan grocery and retail store is just the latest in a string of similar thefts across Greater Grand Rapids.
According to the Walker Police Department, the crime happened Monday, Aug. 29 at the Meijer on Wilson Avenue in Standale.
Walker police say a woman's purse was snatched from her car as she was returning her shopping cart to the cart return.
Last week, Grand Rapids Police arrested Philemon Tumusifu, 19, of Grand Rapids for allegedly stealing a purse and using the victim's credit card.
Police say Tumusifu has been involved several other larcenies, including two in Grandville.
On Aug. 10 and Aug. 18, police say he stole a purse from two victims from the Meijer parking lot as they loaded groceries in their car.
Court documents reveal Tumusifu admitted he and a juvenile planned to steal the victims' purses in Grandville. He took the license plate off his car and drove to the Meijer. The juvenile got out of the car, stole the purses, then hopped back into Tumusifu's car.
"In general, we don't have a lot of problems statistically speaking of purses being stolen in broad daylight. It's a very frustrating and brazen act," said Sgt. Eric Brunner with the Kent County Sheriff's Office.
Law enforcement is reminding shoppers to remain vigilant.
"Maybe hide your purse or if you can just bring a wallet or a card inside instead," said Brunner. "If we're going to leave something in the car, we still want it out of sight, out of mind, because we don't want someone looking in the car and stealing the purse."
Tumusifu has upcoming court dates in both Grand Rapids and Grandville.
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