A man from Ohio is accused of stealing purses and using the stolen credit cards to purchase mostly gift cards at several businesses in Ross Township.
“I just bring a very small purse like this hooked onto my arm,” said Priscilla McCreary. “Because I’m afraid of leaving my purse in the basket and then somebody would take whatever is in there.”
Priscilla McCreary knows her feelings are valid.
“It happens everywhere,” said McCreary. “Grocery stores. You just have to be aware of your surroundings.”
On Sunday, a theft happened at Target and Best Buy. Customers weren’t the target this time. Instead, employees were. Security cameras recorded 24-year-old Angelo Dowdell walking into Target and then removing a woman’s purse from a cart. This woman had been working in the electronics department. Over the phone, she told Channel 11 that in the span of an hour, Dowdell racked up more than $4,000 in purchases from Kohl’s, Target and Giant Eagle on her four credit cards.
According to the criminal complaint, Dowdell was also seen going into the break room in Best Buy and walking out with a purse.
“Fortunately, I’ve never experienced it,” said McCreary. “But it is a scary situation.”
Using security cameras, plate readers and traffic cameras, Ross Township police officers found Dowdell getting into an SUV parked in front of the Fine Wine and Good Spirits store in the same shopping center. They arrested him after he confessed and charged him with device fraud, theft and giving police a fake name. Police also found gift cards and receipts in the vehicle.
Dowdell had several active warrants out of both Pennsylvania and Ohio, all for similar charges related to theft and giving officers a fake name.
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