Woman snatches purse from Walmart shopper in Melbourne

Woman steals purse at Walmart store in Melbourne, Florida.
Woman steals purse at Walmart store in Melbourne, Florida.

MELBOURNE, Florida – A woman was arrested Thursday after dragging a female from her vehicle, in the Walmart parking lot, and stealing her purse according to the Melbourne Police Department.

According to the victim, at 8:25 p.m., she was returning a movie to the Redbox machine located at 1000 N. Wickham Road at the entrance of the Walmart store.

While facing the machine, a woman snatched her purse out of her hand and ran out of the exit doors. The victim ran after the woman as she jumped into a red Dodge van, the affidavit report said.

“[The victim] stated she reached into the vehicle and grabbed onto the female to prevent her from leaving with her belongings. [The victim] stated the female revved the engine and sped off, with her still hanging out of the vehicle,” the officer said.

Police said the victim was nearly run over as she was dragged and fell from the vehicle, according to the report.

Walmart’s security video was reviewed, which showed the entire incident as described by the victim. Two witnesses also provided sworn statements.

The vehicle was found minutes later by police on NASA Blvd, and a traffic stop was conducted.

Police could not locate the purse, but they found some of the victim’s belongings scattered inside the vehicle. A set of car keys and a business card for the victim’s doctor were located on the floorboard of the van.

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The driver was identified as 61-year-old Gwendolyn Sue Butler of Melbourne.

Butler was arrested on a charge of Aggravated Battery with a Deadly Weapon, and Robbery. Bond set at $20,000.

DISCLAIMER: Arrests and mugshots were made public by complaint affidavits, arrest affidavits, and police reports. All persons arrested are innocent until proven guilty.

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Scott Lee travels between Brevard County and Indian River County and has been writing for various publications for approximately 30 years. Lee also writes for Sebastian Daily covering Vero Beach and Florida news. Currently, he covers Palm Bay, West Melbourne, and the Melbourne area.
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