A 77-year-old woman has her purse back thanks to bystanders who heard her protests after a man stole it in a Dillons parking lot in south Wichita over the weekend, police said.
The theft occurred at about 1:45 p.m. Sunday in the 5500 block of East Harry, Lt. James Espinoza said. Two men who are brothers-in-law and a woman took off after the thief, he said.
The suspect ran north of the store east of Oliver, with the woman and men driving after him in separate vehicles. The woman got out of her car at one point and ran after the suspect, Espinoza said.
The suspect told her, “‘Quit chasing me or I will shoot you with my gun,’” Espinoza said, and the woman complied.
At some point, the man doubled back to the south. Two men spotted him in the 1800 block of South Bleckley, several blocks south of the store.
The suspect ran toward one of the men, who knocked him down and held him there until police arrived, Espinoza said. The 20-year-old suspect was arrested and the victim got her purse and keys back.
“It was a good thing those people did, coming to the aid of a 77-year-old victim,” Espinoza said.
But he cautioned, “People have been injured for less.”
As it turned out, the suspect did not have a gun, Espinoza said. He was booked into jail on suspicion of criminal threat, larceny and an outstanding warrant.