May 19, 2015

Virginia Highland Patrol First on Scene

A few days ago many of us received this urgent alert from Nextdoor.

BOLO - black male white tank with jeans. Running north on Vance from east on Virginia Ave.
Three adults were in pursuit, 9:42pm. Woman was screaming stolen phone. 911 called.

My first thought was, even though I want this suspect caught, I hope these three adults aren't hurt. Perhaps fortunately the civilians chasing this suspect did not apprehend him. However, we have learned from Virginia Highland Patrol  that once again one of our own patrol officer, Chip Cook, was the first on scene. This highlights the real value of increasing membership in the patrol so that we can have officers covering more shifts. 

With additional follow-up we have learned that detectives have a possible lead in the case - one of the victim's credit cards was used elsewhere in the city, and they are working to secure and review video tape from the store. Also, police believe this snatch may be related to other incidents in Zone 6 and are investigating that angle.

This photo shows just how easy it can be to snatch someone's phone. The best way to avoid this is to carry phones in a front pocket (less accessible) or inside a zipped bag or backpack. If you must use your phone while out on a busy street, try to be aware of people around you. Make eye contact with people approaching you so they know you will recognize them if they try something. And, if your phone is taken, make a lot of noise, but do not chase the suspect. You never know who might have a weapon they will use if cornered.

If we hear more about this case it will be reported here. Please keep letting us know when something happens in the neighborhood so that we can follow-up and learn if there has been an arrest, or other development.

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