Mother has wallet and car stolen while holiday shopping in Peoria

Posted at 4:48 PM, Nov 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-12-01 00:42:45-05

A single mother of two left stranded while doing some shopping during the holiday weekend.
The victim, who doesn't want to be identified, was at the Walmart near 79th Avenue and Peoria when she noticed she was being followed.

"I noticed them when I walked in to get my cart, I went to use the bathroom and the man was still there. I went up and down the aisles and he would be there.

She says she's in school for criminal justice and she knows she should have reported the suspicious man immediately, but she says her guard was down.

"You don't think people are going to follow you and take your stuff in the middle of the store, especially with a child in your cart."

But the second she turned her back, she felt her cart move.

"I only thought, my phone was taken until I went to the register to pay for my stuff and I saw I didn't have my wallet. Then I went to my car and discovered I didn't have my key and I couldn’t' find my car.”

She says the guy that was following her was working with two other people. Customers helped grab pictures of the men as they were rushing out of the store. Days later, Avondale police called her up saying they found her car.

"It reeks of weed. It's disgusting. I'm missing all of my stuff.

The car seat, all her hair supplies for work, her school laptop, and Christmas presents for her kids were all taken. The bad guys did leave behind plenty of evidence, including fingerprints on the window and underwear in the trunk of the car.

She's sharing her story hoping it will help catch these guys and warn others.

"It's the holidays, but people are out to take your stuff so be aware of your surroundings."

If you recognize the men in the photos, call Peoria Police or Silent Witness.