Following several incidents of jewelry thefts that seem to specifically target seniors, and three thefts yesterday, the San Ramon Police Department said they believe there is likely a connection between the recent uptick.
"At this point, we believe this crime trend is related based on the series of incidents that have happened numerous times over the past two months," SRPD Captain Denton Carlson said. "They are all too similar in their methods to be unrelated and random."
According to the department, a suspect described as a woman of Indian descent was involved yesterday in three jewelry thefts in the area. She is reported to have engaged the victims in conversation while putting fake jewelry on them, then taking the victims' jewelry while removing what she had just put on them. She was reportedly unsuccessful in one attempt to remove a victim's bracelet.
The first of the three incidents on Jan. 11 was reported to have been at 9:45 a.m. near Browntail Way and Zebrina Court, in which the suspect reportedly fled in a dark sedan driven by a man described by SRPD as of Indian descent. The second reportedly occurred just after 4 p.m. on Goldenbay Avenue, and the third at 5:15 p.m. near Kings Road and Bennington Way. The dark sedan the suspect fled in was reported to also have a child inside in the second and third incidents.
At the end of last November, SRPD had also posted a warning about reports of jewelry thefts in the area, in what appeared to be a trend that was escalating, in which seniors were specifically targeted. They pointed to two reports in the previous days, on Nov. 24 and Nov. 28 last year.
According to the Nov. 29 Facebook post, a victim described as an elderly woman was walking near Mosaic Park, on S. Wedgewood Road on Nov. 24 around 3:30 p.m., when two suspects, one described as a heavyset caucasian man in his 50s and the other as a caucasian woman in her 30s, engaged her in a conversation from their car. One suspect was reported to have then exited the car and "used a sleight-of-hand technique to remove the victim's necklace and bracelets before getting back into the car and driving away."
The post included details about an additional report, from Nov. 28, which states that an elderly woman was walking on Cinnamon Ridge Road at about 12:15 p.m. when she was approached by a suspect described as an Asian Indian woman in her 30's, with black hair in a ponytail. The suspect reportedly exited a BMW SUV driven by a suspect described as an Asian-Indian man in his 30s. Again, the suspect reportedly engaged the victim in conversation, and used a sleight of hand technique to take the victim's watch.
Detectives are currently pursuing leads on what they believe to be a crime trend, according to the Jan. 12 Facebook post from SRPD. The post adds that San Ramon is not alone in these incidents, which appear to be happening throughout the Bay Area, but notes that there have been no injuries reported. SRPD is encouraging residents not to walk alone, or to leave valuables at home if they do.