Everett purse-snatching victim’s quick action led police to suspect

  • Mon Nov 21st, 2011 7:10pm
  • News

By Diana Hefley Herald Writer

EVERETT — A Bothell man is accused of preying on an Everett woman because of her age.

Turns out the woman, 69, was quicker and smarter than the suspected robber planned for when he followed her home and reportedly snatched her purse earlier this month.

Prosecutors allege that David Lavrentyer, 21, hatched a plan with three other people to steal from the elderly. The four waited outside a Safeway and “watched for old people coming out to their cars,” Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Laura Twitchell wrote in court papers.

Lavrentyer and another man allegedly then went inside the store to see if there were any older people shopping. They picked an Everett woman and waited for her to leave, Twitchell wrote. They allegedly followed the woman home.

The woman told investigators that she had pulled her car partially into her garage. She was getting out when a man walked up behind her, grabbed her purse and ran out of the garage to a waiting car.

The woman called 911. She also called her bank and cancelled her credit card.

That call led police to the suspects.

A Snohomish County sheriff’s sergeant called the bank and was told that someone had attempted to use the card five minutes earlier at a Mukilteo 7-Eleven. The sale didn’t go through because the victim already had cancelled the card, Twitchell wrote.

Deputies raced to the store where they spotted a black car and found the victim’s driver’s license and Social Security card in the bathroom garbage can.

Deputies stopped the four suspects. Lavrentyer allegedly told investigators he took “the old woman’s purse.”

Police found the victim’s purse and prescription glasses inside the suspects’ car.

Lavrentyer was charged with first-degree theft. Prosecutors charged the case in a way that leaves the door open for them to recommend an exceptional sentence beyond the maximum based on the victim being particularly vulnerable.

Lavrentyer on Monday pleaded not guilty to the charge. He remained jailed Monday on $10,000 bail.

Detectives continue to investigate the case against the other three people in the car.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463; hefley@heraldnet.com.