Purse swiped as woman visits loved one’s grave, BSO seeks person of interest

Investigators urge public to keep eye out for van with Arkansas plates

NORTH LAUDERDALE, Fla. – Broward County deputies are seeking a suspect accused of stealing from a woman during a deeply personal moment.

According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, at around 1 p.m. on Jan. 4, the woman was visiting her loved one’s grave at a cemetery in the 1500 block of South State Road 7 in North Lauderdale.

Deputies said she parked her SUV in the roadway on the east side of the cemetery and went to visit the grave.

When she came back, the car’s rear driver-side door window shattered and her mother’s purse was nowhere to be found.

According to BSO, the woman noticed a white van in the area prior to the break-in.

Deputies identified the van as a 2021 Toyota Sienna van with an Arkansas tag of ABN61D.

“Immediately following the incident, a female subject wearing a mask, gray dress, and pink slippers, carrying a black bag, was seen on video surveillance attempting to purchase a $500 gift card at a local store using a credit card from the stolen purse,” BSO spokesperson Gerdy St. Louis wrote Wednesday. “The transaction was declined, but the crime was caught on camera.”

The woman is considered to be a person of interest in the case, deputies said.

Anyone with information on the woman in the video or the white Sienna is asked to call BSO North Lauderdale District Detective Lisa Sokol at 954-720-2261 or Broward Crime Stoppers at 954-493-8477.

About the Author:

Chris Gothner joined the Local 10 News team in 2022 as a Digital Journalist.