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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Samantha Thomas

Kid’s cellphone photo helps nab suspects

A 5-year-old child who grabbed his mother's cellphone from her purse during a shopping trip inadvertently helped arrest two repeat theft suspects in Spokane.

The child accidentally took pictures of the suspects' vehicle as they fled with the woman's purse just after 5 p.m. Tuesday outside the Walmart on North Colton Street, according to the Spokane Police Department.

The pictures included the car's license plate number, which police say matched the car driven by purse-snatching suspects Andrew V. Auerbach, 24, and Samantha D. Thomas, 21.

The couple already is accused of purse snatchings in April and May but was allowed to stay out of jail pending trial. Police arrested them again today and booked them into Spokane County Jail on new felony theft charges.

Police are looking for the victim of an attempted purse snatching outside Winco on North Nevada Street that occurred about 5 p.m. Tuesday.

The victim is urged to call Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

Pawn shop video helps nab theft suspects

Surveillance video from a local pawn shop helped identify a young couple who police believe stolen purses from at least four women in grocery store parking lots.

Samantha D. Thomas, 21, and Andrew V. Auerbach, 24, were arrested Saturday but are out of jail on their own recognizance.

Police say Thomas implicated herself in four robberies in April and May during an interview with police at the Public Safety Building on Saturday. She and Auerbach, who applied for a marriage license last year, were seen on camera pawning a victim's camera after police developed information that they were suspects.

They are believed to have stolen purses April and May 7 at Safeway, 2509 E. 29th Ave., and again May 7 at Fred Meyer, 525 E. Francis Ave.

Thomas confessed to another purse snatching outside Winco on North Nevada Street during her interview with police. The victim came forward after media reports, and police plan to recommend an additional theft charge.

The Spokane County Sheriff's Office continues to investigate a purse theft outside Fred Meyer in Spokane Valley May 9.
  

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