Victim wounded in carjacking and purse snatched in separate incident

Published 5:03 pm Wednesday, June 25, 2008

A carjacker in the area of Wal-Mart parking lot attempting to commandeer a vehicle ended up stabbing the vehicle owner as she made an escape while a separate incident at the Dollar General parking lot involved a purse snatching.

On Tuesday, at approximately 9:30 a.m., Picayune Police Department responded to a call in reference to a person falling from and/or being pushed from a moving car in the Wal-Mart area parking lot located off of Frontage Road and Ridge Road, according to a press release from the Picayune Police Department.

Upon arrival at the scene, officers discovered the victim of a carjacking in the store’s parking lot. The suspect is described as an Hispanic/white male. Apparently the suspect approached the victim as she parked her vehicle, a 2004 silver, four-door Toyota Camry, in the parking lot. The Hispanic/white male rode up to the vehicle on a bicycle while the victim was attempting to get out of the car and a confrontation ensued, the release states.

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The suspect then forced his way into the car and attempted to force the victim to drive him away from the area. When she refused to drive, the victim was pushed to the passenger side of the vehicle, Deputy Chief David Ervin said. The victim struggled to escape the vehicle and was stabbed in the forearm and the calf before she jumped or fell out of the car’s passenger side as the suspect drove off.

As the victim attempted to make an escape her leg apparently got hung up in the car, Ervin said.

Picayune Police have posted the car and a description of the suspect on a nationwide broadcast and have also notified all surrounding counties and parishes, Ervin said.

The victim was carried by ambulance to Highland Community Hospital for treatment of the wounds and injuries sustained from escaping from the moving vehicle. The victim at last account was said to be recovering from her wounds.

The license tag of the 2004 silver, four-door Toyota Camry is PRB 077 and is registered in Pearl River County.

About 12 hours after that incident, at about 9:30 Tuesday night, a manager of the Dollar General store was the victim of a purse snatching, Ervin said. After the manager closed up and was walking to her vehicle, a black male with shoulder length black hair wearing a black shirt snatched the purse from her hands in the parking lot. The suspect then ran to the west side of building and went around to the back.

Investigators are continually working both cases. Anyone having information related to these incidents should call Detective Lane Pittman of the Criminal Investigation Division, Picayune Police Department at 601-798-0374 or 601-798-7411.