On Saturday, October 26, 2019, at approximately 11:45 a.m., a theft was reported that happened earlier in the day at Bob Evans, 10 Ludwig Drive, Fairview Heights.
The victim, a 71-year-old, Belleville man told police that he had eaten breakfast at Bob Evans alone, paid his bill and began to walk outside. As he approached the door, a man walked in front of him, while they were both inside the vestibule of the restaurant, the man sneezed, which stopped the victim from stepping forward. Another man who was walking behind the victim bumped into the victim, and then they all walked out.
The unsuspecting victim continued about his morning, going to the mall. While at the mall, he received an email that one of his credit cards was being used at the CVS in Swansea. The victim felt in his coat pocket, where he had put his wallet to find it was gone. It was later determined that suspects were able to purchase several gift cards at CVS, amounting to approximately $2,000. The wallet also contained an undetermined amount of cash.
Police have compiled video surveillance from both Bob Evans and CVS and are now asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspects.
Within the videos, you see two to three suspects plotting to pick-pocket the older man while he paid his bill. The first suspect is described as a black male wearing a button-up shirt and tie. He has a heavier build with glasses. The second suspect is a larger black male wearing a black ball cap with a white emblem on the front. He also has a bright silver or gold earring in his right ear. There was also a third male talking to the first suspect at the door who steps out prior to the theft. Police are unsure if he is involved but describe him as a white male, balding, wearing converse all-star tennis shoes.
The two black males are on video making transactions at the CVS. They are both wearing the same clothing; however, the first suspect had removed his necktie. The theft occurred at 10:30 a.m., with the two males arriving at CVS in Swansea at approximately 10:45 a.m.
Anyone who can identify the suspects or has information about the crime is asked to contact the Fairview Heights Police Department at (618) 489-2100, or you can leave an anonymous tip on our website www.fhpd.org.