Purse Thief

Suspects in Purse Theft Caught After Facebook Post Generates Leads from Community #GVCopBeat #ShareGJ

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LIVELY ORTIZOn Tuesday, October 6, officers with the Grand Junction Police Department were dispatched to the Wal-Mart on North Avenue to contact a 79 year old female victim, reporting her purse was stolen from her cart while she was shopping.

Loss prevention employees were able to provide the officer with surveillance footage, showing a male and female walk past the victim’s shopping cart.  The female is seen taking the purse, and immediately proceeds to the exit of the store.  The male appears to observe the victim until the female takes the purse, and then he, too, exits the store.

On October 8, the Grand Junction Police Department posted pictures of the suspects on our social media page, hoping to generate some tips that would lead to identification of the individuals involved.

On October 10, a reporting party called dispatch and informed them that she saw the photos posted on Facebook, seeking information on the suspects, and she recognized both of them.  She was able to provide names of both subjects, and stated she was “100% sure” of their identities.

On October 11, officers were dispatched to a verbal disturbance in the 2800 Block of Elm Avenue.  One of the involved parties was reported to be Eric Lively, DOB 04/29/80, who was the male identified as the suspect in the theft of the purse.  Officers responded to the area and initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle described in the verbal disturbance call.  The two occupants of the vehicle were Lively and Kassandra Ortiz, DOB 01/27/92, who was the female identified as a suspect in the theft.

Officers were able to positively ID both Lively and Ortiz as the suspects in the theft by comparing their appearance to the subjects caught on the surveillance video.  They also located the purse the female suspect was carrying at the time of the theft in the vehicle at the time they were stopped.

Both Lively and Ortiz were arrested and remanded to the Mesa County Jail on charges of Theft (M2) and Crimes Against an At-Risk Adult (F4).

Great job, Grand Junction!  What a great example of clamping down on crime by partnering with our community!  Thank you!