Police: Man charged with purse thefts

By: By Beth Lawrence - blawrence@laurinburgexchange.com

LAURINBURG – Police have arrested a Laurinburg man for several purse thefts at Walmart in recent weeks.

Christopher Patel, 23, of Airbase Road, was arrested Thursday after he attempted to take a woman’s purse from her shopping cart, according to Assistant Police Chief Terry Chavis.

Patel was charged with two misdemeanor counts larceny, and conspiracy to commit larceny and resist delay and obstruct.

“He was apparently working with another person, but we had to charge him with misdemeanors because he didn’t take them from the person. He took them from the shopping cart,” Chavis said.

Police believe Patel first attempted the snatch-and- grab thefts in September when a resident of Pea Bridge Road reported that someone took her wallet with an undisclosed amount of cash out of her purse while she at Walmart. The wallet was later recovered in a trash bin in the store.

On Oct. 6 an 84-year-old resident of Turnpike Road reported that someone took her purse from a shopping cart while she was in Walmart. The woman’s purse was recovered, but an undisclosed amount of cash was missing.

Patel’s record shows traffic violations and possession of a schedule II drug in 2016. He was charged with possession of a stole firearm in 2016, but the charges were dropped.

At the time of his arrest, Patel was wanted for probation violations.

He received a $7,000 secured bond, according to Chavis.


By Beth Lawrence


Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169

Reach Beth Lawrence 910-506-3169