A woman exiting her car was punched in the face and robbed Monday night in Germantown, a possible escalation of a brazen purse theft spree that began in late December.
The most recent victim, a 46-year-old woman, was parked in a lot within the 2000 block of Appledowre Circle at around 9 p.m. when a male suspect demanded money and threatened her with a knife, Montgomery County Police officer Rebecca Innocenti, a police spokeswoman told Patch.
The woman was punched in the face when she said she didn’t have any money.
On Tuesday, police released a composite sketch and are urging residents to be vigilant—locking their doors even if they’re inside their cars and taking all valuable items out of their vehicles, Innocenti said.
The suspect in Monday night's alleged armed robbery and assault has been linked to at least one other robbery and seven vehicle-related purse thefts in neighborhoods near Frederick Road and Scenery Drive, along Middlebrook Road.
Some of the thefts happenend while the victims were still inside the vehicles.
Police described the suspect as a light-skinned black male, age 18-28, with a round face, 5-foot-7, 140 pounds. He was last seen wearing a black knit skullcap, blue jeans, and a turquoise zipper jacket.
The suspect has been linked to the following incidents:
Jan. 22 — Attempted robbery, 19900 block of Dunstable Circle
A 47-year-old woman was inside a vehicle parked in a driveway at around 6:30 a.m. when a man tried to open the driver and front passenger doors. The woman claimed that the man yelled at her and ran away when he discovered the doors were locked.
Jan. 14 — Robbery, the 11300 block of Halethorpe Terrace
A 50-year-old woman was robbed at as she opened her vehicle’s door. Police said the suspect, who claimed to have a knife, reached into the driver’s side of the vehicle and took the victim’s jewelry. The incident occurred at around 8:30 p.m.
Jan. 11–Jan. 12 — Thefts from vehicles, 100 block of Appledowre Court
Two incidents were reported between 10 p.m. Jan. 11, and 8 a.m. Jan. 12. The suspect broke into a vehicle and took a purse. In another incident, a car was broken into, but nothing was reported missing.
Jan. 9 — Theft from vehicle, 20100 block of Locustdale Drive
Between 5:40 a.m. and 6:20 a.m., electronics and cash were stolen from a vehicle. There were no signs of forced entry. The suspect was not seen by the victim.
Jan. 8 — Theft from vehicle, 19900 block of Appledowre Circle in Germantown
At 7:55 a.m., the victim and her daughter were sitting inside a vehicle in front of a residence when a suspect opened the unlocked passenger side door and stole the victim’s purse.
Jan. 2— Theft from vehicle, 20000 block of Appledowre Circle
At approximately 8 p.m., the suspect opened the unlocked vehicle and stole the victim’s purse. The suspect was not seen by the victim.
Dec. 31, 2012 — Theft from vehicle, 20000 block of Gateshead Circle
Between 8:15 and 8:45 a.m., the suspect forced entry into the vehicle and took the victim’s purse and electronic devices. The suspect was not seen by the victim.
Dec. 26, 2012 — Theft from vehicle, 11400 block of Locustdale Terrace
At approximately 9 a.m., the suspect forced entry into the vehicle and took the victim’s purse. The suspect was not seen by the victim.
Got a tip? Call MCP's 5th District Criminal Investigations Divison at 240-773-6200.
See More on Patch
- Crime Summary: Burglary Arrests Made, Strong-Arm Robbery Reported
- Crime Summary: Seneca Convenience Robbed, Vehicle Thefts Reported
- Crime Summary: Auto Thefts, Armed Robbery, Indecent Exposure Reported
- Crime Summary: Strong-Arm Robbery, Vehicle-Related Thefts Reported in North Potomac
- Germantown Crime Summary: Aggravated Assault, Thefts and Burglaries