NEW: Terrifying details on Weir Park attack, police report another robbery attempt
New details have emerged about a bold robbery Saturday in West University involving a mother and her children — including the possibility it could have been averted — and on a separate robbery attempt in a West U neighborhood Monday night.
It turns out that first case, which InstantNewsWestU.com reported earlier today when police released information and a surveillance photo, happened at Weir Park, was witnessed by horrified park goers and children — including the victim’s own youngsters.
Police at first said simply that the woman had her purse grabbed from her shoulder by a black man at about 6:30 p.m. Saturday (Oct. 14) and sustained minor injuries, with the suspect returning to a white Pontiac Grand Prix where two other suspects awaited.
Now West U police have added that the park was the location of the robbery, that the Grand Prix in question was an older model with no license plates, and that the woman was dragged to the getaway vehicle, suffering injuries to her arm and foot. According to other details from police, the robbers used her credit card, charging $151 at Champs Sports Bar in the Galleria area.
That corroborates a frenzied report posted on social media report right after the incident Saturday by a West U resident who saw the robbery and said the victim was walking to her car with her children and appeared to be targeted by robbers waiting for someone to leave the park.
“One of the mom’s (sic) there was walking to her car with her 2 toddlers and a car with 3 guys inside stopped and snatched her purse,” the account read. “Everyone was screaming we thought they tried to kidnap her child it was horrible and traumatizing.”
Frustrating to police is the possibility that the crime may have been prevented.
Shortly before the robbery, a resident in the 2800 block of Nottingham saw suspects in a vehicle fitting the same description running into an open garage. He said because he saw a police car passing by, traveling northbound on Wakeforest so he didn’t think to call 911 — and waited to report the suspicious behavior until after the Weir Park robbery had occurred.
Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying the suspects — and are reminding residents to call 911 immediately when they see any suspicious behavior.
In another incident, a resident walking up his driveway at Riley and College streets at about 10:15 p.m. Monday was able to avoid a robbery attempt.
West U police said the man was approached by a black man who got out of a parked, dark-colored sedan and asked for directions. He attempted to steal the resident’s phone, but the man was able to get to safety, and the suspect fled.
Anyone with information on either crime should contact West U police at 713-668-0330.