A homeless Stark County man was nabbed in Akron after Summit County police say he targeted elderly women in purse-snatchings that left two people hurt. He is also the suspect in other similar incidents.
GREEN A Jackson Township man was arrested after Summit County Sheriff's deputies say he has been targeting elderly women at supermarkets, stealing their purses and, in one case, even fighting a woman for hers.
Inspector William Holland of the Summit County Sheriff's Office said investigators believe Jarod Lauderdale, 41, formerly of Mohr Street NW, may have been responsible for similar incidents in Cuyahoga Falls and Tallmadge.
Sheriff's deputies joined by agents with the U.S. Marshals Violent Fugitive Task Force found Lauderdale on Tuesday in Akron where they arrested him on felony charges of theft and two counts of robbery.
"Further charges are pending," Holland said, adding Lauderdale remained behind bars Wednesday in the Summit County Jail.
Deputies believe he grabbed an 81-year-old woman's purse from her car as she pumped gas about 11:30 a.m. Monday in Coventry Township, making off with an undisclosed amount of money and credit cards before driving away in his vehicle, according to the news release.
Lauderdale also is accused of injuring a 63-year-old woman outside the same store about 10:30 a.m. Nov. 7 when he opened her car door and grabbed her purse.
The woman tried to hold onto her purse, but he was able to rip it from her arms, injuring her hand. He drove away with her purse, which contained $50 and credit cards, Holland said.
And, deputies believe, at 12:30 p.m. Nov. 2, he went to grocery store in Green where he reportedly grabbed an 82-year-old woman's purse that had been sitting on top of her closed car trunk. The purse contained her checkbook.
Holland said as Lauderdale ran to his own car with her purse and fled the scene, he struck a man, causing minor injuries.
"He was targeting these women," Holland said. "They were distracted, either loading groceries into their cars or pumping gas."
Federal agents and the deputies found him Tuesday in his white Chevrolet Impala in a parking lot in Akron, where "they did recover some of the (stolen) property."
Stark County court records show Lauderdale had been arrested in Canton in 2015 on warrants from Tampa, Fla.
Hillsborough County, Fla. court records show he was convicted of three counts of petty theft and a felony charge of providing false information to a pawn broker had been dropped by the prosecutor.
He also was evicted from his Jackson Township home in September, records show.