EXCLUSIVE: Local grandmother chases thief, speaks

A purse snatcher got more than he bargained for when a local grandmother gave chase and won.

Beth Schjott said she is happy surveillance cameras were rolling when a heavy set male walked up to her and snatched a purse from inside her car.

“He was reaching inside of my vehicle and pulling my purse out and I turned around and was like ‘oh hell no this is not happening to me today’,” said Schjott. “That’s when I took off and started running.”

It happened just after noon on Sunday, February 2.

Schjott says she ran across the Walgreens parking lot on Government Blvd by the Loop after the unknown male suspect.

She said the man physically bent his own license plate so that no one could read it and then tried to drive away.

“Once I got to the car he told me — he said ‘I’m going to kill you, I’m going to kill you’,” remembered Schjott. “I said ‘not before I get my purse’ and then he was struggling to get away from me because I was struggling to get my purse back. He let go and just threw me to the ground.”

FOX10 News learned Schjott was not the only victim targeted Sunday.

Diane Gibbons saw the surveillance photo on FOX10 News’ facebook page and recognized the suspect.

“I said ‘oh my god, that’s the guy, that’s the guy!” remembered Gibbons. “I saw her running behind him to catch him and thought, ‘I would have done the same thing.”

Gibbons fell victim to a purse snatching outside the Neighborhood Wal-mart on University Blvd later Sunday afternoon.

She said the heavy set male pulled his vehicle very close to her shopping cart and grabbed her purse.

Gibbons yelled and attempted to go after the vehicle.

Both women are speaking out in the hopes that someone will recognize the coward.

They said it’s possible he has more victims out there.

“I mean I’m almost 60 years old and being white haired, in a handicap spot, he probably thought he’d have the advantage over me,” said Schjott. “I work hard. I work hard for what I have.”

The women described the vehicle as a 4-door car, Champaign or Gold in color with a Florida tag.

Police said the two women are very lucky but do not encouraged the public to chase after criminals.

Anyone with information about the man is encouraged to call Mobile Police.

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