Thief snatches purse out of pickup truck with child inside

Woman says she left pickup truck running with baby in back seat

Published On: Mar 10 2013 10:50:39 PM CDT   Updated On: Mar 11 2013 08:15:23 AM CDT
HOUSTON -

Officials said a woman was targeted by a thief in her own driveway, but what the thief may not have known was that the whole incident was caught on camera.

Patricia Hernandez said she left her son in the back seat to quickly run inside to grab some papers, giving a thief the perfect opportunity to strike.

"This is one of my mistakes I do this all the time, leave the car running," said Hernandez. "I do always lock it, but for some reason this time I didn't lock it."

When Hernandez got back in her car, she noticed the passenger door was open.

"The first thing I thought, somebody got in my car," said Hernandez. "I look to the back, see my baby, see the diaper bag and right away I realize my purse was gone."

While Hernandez was inside, a man pulled up, jumped out of his car, slowly walked to the passenger-side door, grabbed her purse and ran off, all while her baby was in the back seat.

"I can see in the surveillance video that he has gloves, he knows what he is doing, he knew his intentions," said Hernandez. "I have no idea where this person came (from)."

This isn't the first time the Hernandez family said they have been targeted by crooks. A few weeks earlier, their surveillance video showed white pickup truck pull into their driveway, several men jumped out and tried to steal the basketball hoop, which was too heavy to lift.

"It messes with you emotionally and you are put in the position where you don't have security," said Hernandez. "You don't know who is following you."

Neighbors said they are now on edge that something like this could happen so close to their homes.

"It makes us nervous because maybe that happens to us some day," said Dao Tran.

Tran said she has lived in this neighborhood for 17 years and said the neighborhood has gotten less safe as the years pass.

"Anytime I go out, I lock the door," said Tran. "Anytime I leave the car, I also lock the door."