Thieves Steal Purse, Wallet From Car Outside Gym

Wednesday, January 26th 2022, 5:37 pm

TULSA, Oklahoma -

A Tulsa woman said she is out more than $6,000 after thieves broke into her car outside of a Cherry Street gym. The thieves stole her purse and wallet.

She said someone used her credit cards just 20 minutes later to buy nearly $2,000 worth of gift cards.

Amanda Brown said she comes to the same gym every week. She feels safe and never thought something like this would happen to her.

Police said we all have to do a better job of not making ourselves easy targets. It starts with not leaving valuables in cars.

Brown walked out of the gym and found her car window broken and her $3,000 purse gone.

20 minutes later she started getting alerts on her phone that her credit cards were being used to buy several $500 gift cards.

"It was devastating. I broke out in tears. The cops told me okay we need you to get it together because we need you to think through and tell me what all was in your purse,” said Brown.

Brown's car was one of two cars broken into on the morning of January 26 in the same parking lot.

Witnesses told police they saw people looking into car windows.

"I know I am probably not going to get my purse back, which at this point I've accepted, but the fact they've gotten away with it, it just eats me to the core," said Brown.

Tulsa Police Burglary Detectives said they investigate more than 7,000 cases a year. Police said that number would drastically drop if people would stop leaving purses, wallets and guns in cars.

They said criminals look for easy targets and often use stolen credit cards to immediately buy gift cards, then toss the credit cards.

"A vehicle is just a glass safe. It is not secure at all. Anybody can get into a car. It is very common. You should not think that you are not going to be a victim. That's why you should take all the steps or precautions, before you get to where you are going,” said Lieutenant Tim Means with Tulsa Police Burglary.

Brown said she now realizes this can happen to anyone.

"You always say, check your surroundings, and everyone thinks they are going to do that because people tell them to do that, but then you don't. I need to be better about that for sure,” said Brown.

If you recognize the person in the surveillance pictures, call Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS.