GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Goodlettsville police are searching for the woman they say is responsible for a number of recent car burglaries.
They say the unidentified woman is connected to a number of car burglaries where car windows were smashed, and credit cards were stolen and then immediately used to make purchases at stores near the crime scene.
Police said she is a suspect in at least four smash-and-grab car burglaries that happened at Moss Wright Park and another that occurred at Bethel Baptist Church on Longhollow Pike.
In each case, a car window was broken, and a purse was stolen. Other expensive items, like laptops remained untouched.
According to authorities, the woman has been seen on several store surveillance videos. They say she immediately goes to nearby gas stations, convenience stores and grocery stores to use the victims’ credit cards before they can be reported missing.
The woman, police say, has limited her fraudulent purchases to cartons of cigarettes.
Officials believe the woman has an accomplice. They were reportedly seen in red and white getaway cars.
News 2 spoke with Chelsea Carter, a victim of the recent crimes.
The mother-to-be said she went for a walk in Moss Wright Park on Monday around 2 p.m. She said she was at the park for about 40 minutes.
During that time, someone broke out her car window and stole her purse that was hidden under the seat. Her credit was then used within 20 minutes at a nearby convenience store.
“It was pretty [and] decided to go to the park and get a quick walk in. I was scared. You don’t expect that, especially Goodlettsville. It was a wave emotion,” Carter said.
News of the crime spree at the park has some visitors on edge.
“I feel real violated. I like this park – trust it – always felt safe, even walking alone. But now, I will have to take some extra precautions,” Christine Allen said.
Goodlettsville Detective Les Carlisle is working on the case. He said the unidentified Hispanic woman in the surveillance video is his prime suspect.
“Minutes after each car burglary, that person goes to the closest retail outlet. We believe there are other people involved,” he explained.
Police told News 2 during one crime, the alleged suspect was caught on store surveillance video using a stolen credit card to buy cigarettes while her accomplice was in the parking lot smashing someone else’s car window.
“They know exactly what they are doing,” Carter said. “They are quick about it. They are watching. You have to be diligent and be careful.”
Police urge drivers not to leave valuables unattended in their cars.
Anyone with information on the recent car break-ins should call Goodlettsville police at 615-851-2259.
News 2 is committed to tracking crime across Middle Tennessee. Visit wkrn.com/crimetracker for more coverage.