Thief swipes purse from Palmetto Bay gas station

PALMETTO BAY, Fla. (WSVN) — Police are searching for a thief who, they said, was caught on camera stealing a purse from a car at a Palmetto Bay gas station.

The victim said she had left her car unlocked, Wednesday morning, as she walked into the gas station to pay the cashier.

It was then that, she said, a crook had opened the driver’s side door and took her purse before fleeing.

“I felt very vulnerable, you know,” said the victim, who did not want to be identified or show her face on camera. “All my credit cards, ID, my purse, my wallet, my phone, all my information – my social security is in there – my money.”

Cameras rolled as the suspect pulled up to the Shell station located along U.S. 1, near Southwest 160th Street, in a gray Nissan Maxima. After grabbing the purse, he is seen hopping back into the vehicle and driving off.

“I was super scared. I don’t understand what happened, how it happened so fast,” said the victim.

She hopes the station’s high-definition video could help solve the case.

“They actually have surveillance of the guy at 8 o’clock, already there, waiting,” she said. “He left and came back again when I pulled up, so I think he was waiting outside for people, so he probably did this to many other people, because when the cop came and I made the report, she told me three other people reported robberies in the area.”

The victim also offered a few words of advice to avoid being targeted. “Always lock your doors, especially around the holidays, and try not to carry too much cash on you,” she said.

Police said the Nissan Maxima has a paper tag that reads “CBN5439.”

If you have any information on this thief, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.

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