Police Receive Additional Report of Jewelry Theft with Elderly Victim

Published on May 24, 2022

Palo Alto, CA Following last week’s news release about a roadside attempted robbery of jewelry from an elderly victim, police received an additional report of a similar incident that had occurred in early April.

On Sunday, May 22, 2022, at about 2:39 p.m., our 24-hour dispatch center received a call reporting a robbery that had occurred in April involving the reporting party’s elderly mother.  The reporting party said he had read the Police Department’s news release from May 16 about an attempted jewelry robbery involving an elderly female victim.  That had prompted a conversation among family members that resulted in him learning that his mother had been the victim of a similar scam about seven weeks earlier.  He called police to report the incident.

The investigation revealed that at around 1:00 p.m. on either April 2 or 3, the victim, a woman in her nineties, had been riding her mobility scooter on the sidewalk in the 500 block of Stanford Avenue.  The suspect approached her on foot and told the victim she reminded her of her own mother.  The suspect said she wanted to give her some of her mother’s own jewelry as a gift.  The suspect put a gold chain and a turquoise ring on the victim and left.  When the victim returned home, she realized that the suspect had stolen her own necklace and ring that she had been wearing (with a combined value of a few hundred dollars). 

The victim described the suspect as a woman in her late forties with dark hair.  The victim did not report seeing any vehicle or other people associated with the suspect. 

Along with the case from May 14, this is now the third such similar incident in Palo Alto since October 2021 (to view details of the first case, read our news release about it here).  Detectives are investigating to see if there is any connection between the three cases, or with any other similar crimes in other cities.  The three cases remain unsolved, with no suspects identified.

Police recommend that adult children and caregivers of elderly residents discuss these recent incidents with them, and make them aware of the scam.  Police recommend that you always remain aware of your surroundings and be cautious if approached by a stranger or occupants of an unfamiliar vehicle.  Police recommend maintaining a safe distance from any stranger or unfamiliar, unoccupied vehicle.  Be aware of robbery attempts like these, and other criminal behavior that may occur, and promptly report suspicious behavior or crimes to the police by calling our 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413, or 9-1-1 if it is an emergency. 

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call our 24-hour dispatch center at (650) 329-2413.  Anonymous tips can be e-mailed to paloalto@tipnow.org or sent via text message or voice mail to (650) 383-8984.

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