A series of thefts from holiday shoppers has Lexington Police on alert.
In just six days, 12 people’s wallets have disappeared and their credit cards were used at other stores.
And police believe these thefts are related.
“It's continuing to happen because people don't pay close enough attention to their purses while they're shopping,” said Michael Helsby, Lexington Police Detective. “They leave them in the top of the cart where the child seat is and most of the time they're open. Very easy for someone to walk by and quickly grab the wallet out and they're gone.”
Police say the victims report being distracted by a woman and they stop to talk to her for awhile. They said they didn’t realize their wallet is missing until they were standing in the check out lane.
The credit cards are used immediately after they are stolen, according to police. They said the pick pocket has purchased around $1,200 of goods with the stolen cards.
While police think the thief is a woman, they said they’re not sure.
“We've had victims who have said they think it is a man dressed up as a woman wearing a wig,” Helsby said.
“If you are shopping around the Christmas season,” Helsby added.
We do have a rise in thefts around Christmas time. Keep your bags close. There’s no reason to have a purse lying open anytime of the year, but especially right now as we see a rise in the thefts.”
Police said they’re not sure if the thief is still in Lexington.