Women targeted by purse snatcher in southeast Fresno

FRESNO, Calif.

We're at the Winco parking lot where the suspect tried to take a purse last Friday night. That time, he had a little fight with his victim, and police are worried he may get more violent.

It happened in a flash, just when a woman was least expecting it. Surveillance video shows the man police suspect of snatching several purses.

In the lower left hand corner, you see him swoop in and make off with the victim's purse while she did laundry.

Investigators say he's committed similar crimes at least three more times and he knows who he wants to target.

"They're all female," said Fresno police Sgt. Mark Hudson. "They're all coming out of a store, getting into a car parked in a parking lot."

And they're all alone.

Police say the man carefully scoped out his victims before striking. He hasn't used a weapon, but they're worried he might start.

"In the last one there was a struggle so that's concerning to us that he's escalating his use of force against the victims," said Sgt. Hudson.

The surveillance video helped police get this description of the suspect: He's in his late teens or early 20s. He's about 5'8" to 5'10" and he weighs between 160 and 180 pounds.

And until police catch him, many women say they're changing their habits.

"You know, that happened, I'm not going to bring my purse any more," said Maricela Landa as she tended to laundry at the business where the suspect first struck.

Police say the man may have an accomplice. Witnesses have seen him drive away in a black, 2-door Honda with a rear spoiler and paper license plates.

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