GARFIELD N.J. – Some might think the theft of a restaurant employee’s purse might end in a police report. Not in Garfield, where detectives tracked down and identified a suspect from Lodi in no time.
The Applebee’s worker reported her purse stolen just before 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Capt. Darren Sucorowski said.
Officers Richy Mendez and Daniel Pozo, along with Sgt. Nicolas Santillo, learned that the thief entered the restaurant wearing a black shirt, grey sweatpants, and a camouflage backpack asking to use the bathroom, Sucorowski said.
After loitering around for several minutes, he grabbed the purse and bolted on a bicycle, the captain said.
ALSO SEE: A 16-year-old Garfield boy pulled a gun on a 13-year-old boy and took his bike, said authorities who found and detained the teen bandit.
Less than two hours later, the accused thief – identified as 30-year-old Ryan Morgan – used the victim’s debit card at a Lodi 7-Eleven, Santillo found.
With help from Detective Sgt. Thomas LaMantia, Santillo identified Morgan and police obtained an arrest warrant charging him with theft, Sucorowski said.
It was a little after 5 p.m. the next day that Garfield police visited their Lodi colleagues to collect Morgan after he’d been arrested.
A judge ordered him held, after processing in Garfield, in the Bergen County Jail pending a detention hearing.