Police working to identify group of thieves targeting elderly people in different cities, towns
RINCON, Ga. (WTOC) - Police need the public’s help finding a group of thieves who are targeting elderly people.
“You know, it’s just a sickening crime when people target the elderly and vulnerable population,” says Rincon Police Chief Jonathan Murrell.
Police say the suspects are stealing from people in different cities and towns from Augusta to Savannah.
“They’ve got zero respect. If they’re willing to do that an elderly person, it just kind of goes to show their character,” says Chief Murrell.
The suspects are three women and two men. It’s hard to see their face on surveillance because they use sunglasses and masks to hide their identity. The suspects were recently spotted in Rincon. The suspect vehicle is believed to be a black 2018 Honda CRV, unknown state/tag.
According to police, they stalk elderly women who are shopping alone. One suspect distracts the victim while a second steals the victims wallet. Then they quickly buy items or cash cards using what they stole.
But in a recent return to Rincon one suspect showed a new boldness.
“The individual followed her into the parking lot and said, ‘oh, ma’am you dropped $5 on the ground,’” said Chief Murrell.
As the victim opened her wallet he struck, grabbing her cards and walking away as if nothing happened.
“That was in plain sight. That was right in front of her,” Chief Murrell adds.
Police say the group is responsible for thousands of dollars of stolen money, all from the elderly, averaging $2,000 from each victim.
Multiple jurisdictions have reported similar thefts, including Rincon, Savannah, Roswell, Athens-Clark County, and Augusta.
The public should notify law enforcement immediately if they see these subjects. Anyone with information can contact Detective L. Harris at Rincon PD at 912-826-5200. After hours in Effingham County, please call 912-754-8119 to have an officer respond.
When caught, charges will consist of Robbery, Exploitation of Elderly Persons, Deposit Account Fraud, and Wearing a Mask Which Conceals Identity.
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