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Cops Corner

Woman IDs robbery suspect as he talked to police

A purse snatcher is identified by the victim who was driving by when he was talking to police. This and other reports from the Sarasota Police Department in this week's Cops Corner.

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Saturday, March 11

Positive ID

2:48 p.m., 10th Street at Florida Avenue

Robbery: A woman reported she was standing in front of Publix when a man approached her from behind, grabbed her purse and ran off. When the officer first made contact with the suspect, he initially stated he was not involved in the crime and had instead come out of a neighboring store looking for friends. He also denied taking the victim’s purse.

As the officer was standing at the corner speaking to the suspect, the victim drove past and positively identified him. She stated she recognized his clothing. Surveillance video at Publix captured the suspect taking the victim’s purse and dropping it as he was running. The victim recovered the purse along with all her belongings. 

The suspect later admitted to taking the purse and was placed under arrest for strong-arm robbery by sudden snatching without a weapon.

Sunday, March 12

All is forgiven

8:29 p.m., Main Street near Indian Place

Dispute: A complainant stated he was in an argument with his girlfriend at an unnamed restaurant when she left in their vehicle with his property inside. He told police he attempted to call and text her to retrieve his property, but was ignored. Further, he advised that she froze their shared bank accounts, leaving him unable to withdraw funds to stay at a hotel. 

At his request, the man was transported to the Salvation Army. Shortly after arriving, his girlfriend called him back and stated she was going to come and pick him up.

Tuesday, March 14

Dog day afternoon

5:13 p.m., 3100 block of Fruitville Road

Suspicion: A woman told police that her vehicle’s passenger-side mirror was possibly intentionally damaged while parked at a nearby park, where she went to take her dogs. While there, she advised that she had asked three owners of larger dogs to move to another area where other larger dogs were located. She added that the dog owners became agitated by her request. 

After leaving the area to avoid further verbal confrontation, she later returned to her vehicle and noted that the side-view mirror was damaged, suspecting but unable to prove it was caused by one of the other dog owners. She drove to the reported location, where she called for police response. She said she did not want to press charges but did want the incident documented.

Wednesday, March 15

Towel fight

12:38 a.m., 1200 block of Fifth Street

Dispute: An argument between two men drew police to investigate an alleged assault. The complainant accused the home’s resident of stealing his belongings, which elicited an angry response. As he left in an attempt to defuse the situation, he said the accused struck him twice in the face with a closed fist. 

Officers observed the man had no indications of bruising, bleeding or laceration, and the complainant later admitted the accused struck him with a towel. The complainant further clarified that the alleged attacker had wrapped his hand in a towel before striking him. 

Instead of filing charges, the complainant said he wanted the incident documented. 

Contact was then made with the accused, who appeared to have just exited the shower and was wrapped in a towel. He said there was no physical altercation. The parties were separated and the complainant left the premises. There was no evidence of a crime and no further action was taken.



Andrew Warfield

Andrew Warfield is the Sarasota Observer city reporter. He is a four-decade veteran of print media. A Florida native, he has spent most of his career in the Carolinas as a writer and editor, nearly a decade as co-founder and editor of a community newspaper in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina.

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