Local

Police ID'd Fresno's 'Handbag Bandit'

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Fresno Police have named a suspect in a string of purse thefts at businesses in Fresno and Clovis. Investigators think 25 year-old Andrew Boydstun is the man seen in surveillance videos Action News has shown exclusively over the last several days.

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Surveillance video of the bold bandit first aired on Action News Live at 11 a week ago, showing a suspect walking confidently into a Fresno restaurant and taking a hostess' purse. Since then, several other victims have come forward.

Security images show the suspect walking around with a cell phone to his ear and a coat over his arm. They also show him taking purses and wallets while coming in contact with employees who didn't realize a crime is in progress. Boydstun's neighbors are shocked. "He's a great guy. He's always helped us out and we've helped him out," said neighbor Mike Caporusso.

Action News has learned police served a search warrant at a Clovis home last Friday. Tuesday night, a person who answered the door said Boydstun didn't live there and had no comment. But neighbor Caporusso said he last saw the suspect Friday, just hours before police raided the home.

While police haven't caught up to Boydstun yet, the purse bandit's victims are optimistic an arrest will come soon. "I hope he gets more than parole and a couple of days in jail. He ruined a lot of girl's comfort and their confidence at work. I hope this stops it," said Cheesecake Factory employee Briana Verdeber.

P F Chang's hostess Courtney McLemore was the first victim to contact Action News, frustrated that the police department hadn't even picked up the video more than ten days after her purse was stolen. Now that she's heard there are multiple victims what little sympathy she had for the suspect has evaporated. "I just think he's doing it for kicks. He must be bored. I don't feel bad anymore," said McLemore.

Investigators believe Boydstun may be driving a 2002 four-door Buick that is champagne or light brown in color. The license plate number is 5-W-T-T-5-0-7.

Police say if you see Boydstun or the vehicle, you should call authorities immediately.

(Copyright ©2014 KFSN-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
crimetracker, theft, clovis, fresno, fresno county, fresno police department, local, amanda perez
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