Police search for crooks wanted in high-end purse thefts

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CLERMONT, Fla. - Police in Clermont were searching for an organized group of shoplifters.

Police said surveillance video from inside a Clermont TJ Maxx shows the group stealing $3,000 worth of high-end purses.

“They’re definitely professional thieves … what we call boosters,” said Clermont Police Chief Charles Broadway.

The group of four people walked into the store and went straight for the purse section.

Another suspect came in separately and police said they believed she was the group’s lookout.

“Her responsibility was to make sure store security and store associates weren’t by the exit when they made a bolt for the front door,” Broadway said.

Surveillance video showed the thieves grab numerous purses and when the coast was clear, they quickly walked out.

Police said they had a getaway car waiting in the parking lot. Once the group got to the four-door Acura, they hopped in and took off.

Customers were upset when they learned about the thefts.

“It’s just a shame that they are getting away with it. They should be caught and prosecuted,” said shopper Martha Teriaco.

Shopper Jude Runell said, “I think all consumers see the result of that. I also think they start locking things, so if you are shopping you can’t get a purse and see how you like it, and see how it feels because it’s locked up.”

Police said they believe this same group hit other stores the same way.

Anyone with information on the theft is urged to call Clermont Police.