SEMINOLE, Okla. – A woman working at a popular restaurant is hoping an alleged purse snatcher is caught before she strikes again.
Authorities were called to the Catfish Round-Up restaurant Tuesday after a suspect allegedly stole the purse of the restaurant owners’ daughter during the middle of a busy lunch hour.
Lauren Root says her purse was sitting on the passenger seat of her GMC Sierra pickup truck while she worked inside the restaurant.
Root says she actually talked to the alleged suspect minutes before the crime when she came in to the Catfish Round-Up to ask for a takeout menu, then left in a hurry.
Surveillance cameras show that same person walking toward Root’s truck while putting on a hoodie.
Less than a minute later, she is seen running back across the screen while holding Root’s purse.
Inside the purse were insurance cards, bank cards, cash and an iPad mini.
Seminole County Chief Deputy Terry Gouker says it’s common for suspects to case an area to gauge how busy potential witnesses are.
“I just don’t know why she wasn’t at work,” Root said. “She should have had a job.”
Now, Seminole County officials are hoping surveillance video of the crime will lead to a quick arrest.
Gouker said “This is actually going to make this case.”
Root said, “I just want her caught because I don’t want anyone else to go through the stress that I had to go through.”
The stress of the crime is compounded by the fact that Root is trying to plan her wedding, which is less than a month away from now.
Her entire wedding plan was on that iPad.
She said, “It’s just kind of sickening because I feel like I have to start over from scratch, three weeks before my wedding.”
Anyone with information on this crime is urged to call the Seminole County Sheriff’s Department.