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Truck driver steals purse from car, uses CC

Newly released photos show a burglary suspect by his truck using a stolen credit card at a gas station.

February 4, 2010 12:23:45 AM PST
Los Angeles police have released photographs of a man and a truck, which detectives believe are connected to a downtown Los Angeles car burglary on January 25, 2010."The man in the picture used a woman's credit card to fill up his truck at this gas station, one hour before the card's owner reported her purse taken," said Lt. Paul Vernon, Central Detective Division. "Anyone who knows this man should recognize him easily."

Detectives want tipsters to call police with the man's name. The truck is a distinctly raised, white, early 1990s model Suburban or Yukon SUV. The driver used the stolen credit card to purchase $70 in gasoline at a Shell gas station in Highland Park. The card owner's bank alerted her to the purchase after the purse was reported stolen.

The credit card's owner parked her car on the street in the 400 block of North Figueroa Street in downtown Los Angeles around 7 a.m. She discovered her window smashed and the purse gone from the trunk about five hours later. "This woman put her purse in the trunk, but more often drivers tend to leave things exposed in the passenger compartment," Lt. Vernon explained. "For crooks, that's an invitation to steal."

The most common things stolen from parked cars are iPods, GPS devices, laptops, and purses. All drivers should remember to remove all items from the passenger compartment before parking and locking their cars. "And that includes any wires or mounts that might hint that you have some electronic item inside," Lt. Vernon added.

The man appears to be Hispanic, medium height and weight, and 18 to 25-years-old. He wears his baseball cap reversed. He had another Hispanic man as a passenger in the SUV.

Anyone who may recognize the suspect is urged to Detective Maria Ceja, Central Auto Crimes, at (213) 972-1240. Tipsters can also call Crimestoppers at 800-222-TIPS or 1-800-222-8477.