Loitering Gone Awry: Police Need Help Identifying Purse-Snatcher, Mustang

There's a sign on the outside of a halfway house on Main Street just south of Alabama that I know because I've walked past it numerous times on my way to and from Continental Club and other restaurants and bars in that block. The sign says, "No Loitering or Hanging Around in Front of Office." I've chuckled at it a number of times because they felt the need to say loitering in two different ways to emphasize the point -- or for clarity.

But, what they are trying to prevent is guys standing around smoking and that sort of thing. What they probably don't envision is like what you see in the video above. What is mostly a video of some dude wandering around (i.e., loitering) outside a movie theater quickly turns into a crazy, purse-snatching escapade at the 2:47 mark.

Now, the authorities are seeking help in identifying and locating the mugger and his accomplice in the red Mustang (subtle).

Houston Police describe the suspect as a white male in his early to mid 20s, about 5 feet 9 inches tall and weighing approximately 180 pounds, with a goatee (fly, dude, fly). You can see still shots of him at the beginning of the video. The incident occurred outside a theater at 350 Northpark Drive around 6:10 p.m. on July 10. I mean, in broad daylight!

After robbing the victim, a 48-year-old woman who was minding her business talking on a cell phone (which you can only do outside the theater as those annoying pre-movie vignettes explain), the suspect fled. The 'Stang is clearly visible doing a little loitering of its own while the suspect does his thing, flinging the woman to the ground in the process.

Witnesses told police the getaway car -- which we assume was not driven by Ryan Gosling -- had a licence plate that contained the letters BHR. If this were a detective show on TV, they would have already found the car through some wild graphical interface with the DMV. A magical touch screen would lay out the grid of every street with perfect images of every house and business.

But this is real life and the police need some help the old-fashioned way. If you have any information, please contact the HPD Robbery Division at 713-308-0700 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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Jeff Balke is a writer, editor, photographer, tech expert and native Houstonian. He has written for a wide range of publications and co-authored the official 50th anniversary book for the Houston Rockets.
Contact: Jeff Balke