Three men have been charged in a distraction-style theft that targeted an elderly woman.

Shortly after 11:00 a.m. on September 18th, an 86-year-old woman made a transaction at a bank on Granville Street near West 12th Avenue. When she left the bank and walked to her car parked nearby, she was approached by a man who pointed out some cash lying on the ground. As he kept the woman’s attention, a second man allegedly approached and stole the victim’s purse off the seat of her car.

The two men ran off and got into a waiting car driven by a third man. Police stopped the car, arrested all three suspects, and recovered the woman’s stolen purse and belongings. The victim was shaken, but fortunately she was not physically injured.

Fifty-seven-year-old Adolfo Morella, 60-year-old Eloy Figueroa-Valdes, and 67-year-old Hector Paredes have been charged with theft. All of the accused are residents of Vancouver and were released from custody yesterday pending their next court appearance on October 13th.

Police are continuing their investigation, gathering evidence to support charges and to determine if the three could be responsible for any other similar incidents.

The VPD would like to remind everyone to:

  • make an attempt to carry cash and ID separately from your wallet or purse
  • be aware of your surroundings especially when leaving a bank or currency exchange
  • watch your belongings at all times
  • contact the police immediately if you observe anything suspicious