GAMBRILLS, Md. — It was 7:30 in the morning on Sunday outside the Wegmans in the Waugh Chapel Towne Centre in Gambrills when they struck first.
“Apparently, a suspect approached her,” said Sgt. Kam Cooke of the Anne Arundel County Police Department. “A struggle over the purse took place, at which time, the suspect was able to get ahold of the purse and flee the area.”
By the time police arrived, the suspect had disappeared, yet less than five hours later, police would return to the center for a similar crime.
“Later on, approximately about noon, a similar incident occurred within the shopping center,” said Cooke. “However, this was outside of the Target, and again, a female victim walking to her vehicle approached by a suspect and, again, a struggle over the purse.”
According to charging documents, 43-year-old Christie Jelich snatched the purse away from the victim and as she ran away, she threw another purse at the victim and yelled, ‘You can have this one!’.
But police would get the last laugh when they found the suspect had tossed the original victim’s purse at her, and surveillance footage from inside the Target showed Jelich trying to use that victim’s credit cards.
Court records suggest a trio of thieves then went on a shopping spree, buying gift cards and merchandise from numerous stores, before an off-duty cop recognized Jelich inside a Safeway on Arundel Mills Boulevard that same afternoon and she and two accomplices who were found waiting in a car outside in the parking lot were arrested.
The three suspects are now all being held without bail facing a series of charges in different varying degrees of assault, theft, robbery and conspiracy.