93-Year-Old Woman in Wheelchair Robbed in East Harlem Store

Police are asking for information on the suspect caught on surveillance video.

ByJ.J. Gallagher
September 9, 2016, 5:34 AM

— -- A 93-year-old woman robbed in East Harlem says she doesn't know how she will pay her bills this month after a thief ran off with $600 in cash she had just taken out of the bank.

"I feel terrible, and just keep thinking about it," Maria Vasquez told WABC, a local ABC affiliate.

She says she planned to use the money to pay for her monthly bills and now worries about how she'll get by, WABC reports.

"I need that money, because my husband passed away seven years ago. Until the money comes next month, I'm not sure how I'm going to pay the bills," Vasquez said.

The robbery took only a matter of seconds, Vasquez said, and before she knew it, the thief had snatched the cash she had tucked away inside her dress and slipped out of the store.

"Right away, he puts his hands on me, because he knew where the money was. I said, 'Run, run, run. They're taking my money,'" Vasquez said.

Surveillance cameras from inside the East Harlem clothing store captured the ruthless thief Wednesday afternoon, WABC said.

The video shows the suspect browsing inside the store before he appears to scope out Vasquez and suddenly creeps up from behind her wheelchair and goes for the cash.

Police are asking anyone who may recognize the suspect to speak out before he targets someone else.

"I want him to turn himself in. I don't want them to kill him but punish him so we can all see what punishment is for the rest of the people that think about robbing others," Vasquez said.

Police say the suspect is about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighs about 160 pounds, WABC reports. He was last seen wearing a gray shirt, black sneakers, tan jeans and a tan bag.

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