APD catches juvenile after mall purse snatching

Alexandria Police Department: On December 11, at 4:50 p.m., APD officers responded to a report of a purse snatching at the Alexandria Mall.

According to the initial report, two male juveniles grabbed a woman’s purse and took it from her, then fled the mall on foot running toward MacArthur Drive. Two officers who were preparing to work a holiday patrol detail responded and proceeded to where the suspects were last seen.

The officers located one suspect who jumped into the drainage canal and pursued him, catching him behind Best Buy. He was identified as a 13-year-old and Juvenile Detectives were called out to handle the investigation. During the foot pursuit, another responding officer located the victim’s purse near the entrance to the mall. Some cash that had been taken from the purse was located shortly after behind Best Buy.

“These are the kind of opportunity crimes we often see during the holiday season,” said Alexandria Mayor Jeffrey W. Hall. “I would like to commend Chief Jerrod King and all of the dedicated officers with Alexandria Police who are working so hard to ensure the safety of our citizens. This is an excellent example of how our officers work to identify potential target areas and position themselves to be ready to respond immediately.”

“I’m very proud of these officers and their quick response,” added King. “This is why we have extra officers in high-traffic areas during the holiday shopping season, so that if a crime occurs, we have people already there to respond immediately. I want to thank Corporal Stiles and Corporal Baker, who were on bike patrol at the mall, as well as Officers Shahan and Williams, Detective Branton, and all of the other officers who assisted in this investigation.”

The juvenile was taken to a youth detention facility. Detectives are still investigating the purse snatching to identify the second suspect.