Search for armed robber who stole purse in mall parking lot

- A woman was unscathed after a suspect fired a gun into her car and stole her purse, police said.

Before 9:30 p.m. Thursday, a 51-year-old woman was walking to her parked PT Cruiser in the Tyrone Square Mall parking lot when she noticed an unknown man following her, according to St. Petersburg police.

She rushed to her car and locked her doors, but the man fired one shot inside, shattering her driver’s side car window. He reached in and grabbed her purse and took off in a nearby Saturn, according to a media release. The vehicle was found near 9th Avenue South and 44th Street South, and was reported stolen a few days prior to the robbery.

Fortunately, she wasn’t injured, police said.

“Our primary concern is always for the safety and security of our customers and employees. This isolated incident is under investigation. We are fully cooperating with the Police Department and will assist them in any way we can," said Jeni Wilson, the mall's general manager, in a statement to FOX 13.

Beginning on Friday and throughout the weekend, St. Pete police said they will increase the number of officers in the parking lots as well as inside the mall.

Police have not released a description of the suspect. 

Anyone with information on the identity and whereabouts of the suspect is asked to contact St. Petersburg police at 727-893-7780.


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