NEW ORLEANS, La. (WVUE) - On a Sunday afternoon, and during the age of Covid, Hannah Perkins was just hoping to enjoy a low-risk meal, dining outside with some friends in Mid-City.
“I saw this white pickup truck kind of zoom and stop super-fast on Carrollton and it stopped in the middle of traffic,” said Perkins.
She said everything happened quickly. While one person made a distraction, another young boy took her purse off the table and ran away with it back to the truck.
“It took me aback because a 12-year-old is coming up to steal anything from me. I was like what’s going on. By the time I processed it my purse was already down the street,” said Perkins.
Surrounding tables at Juan’s Flying Burrito in Mid-City helped her call 911 and file a police report. She says officers told her she they had filed similar reports earlier that day. Though for Perkins, she says she was surprised how quickly, and how young the suspect was.
“There were apparently four purses grabbed in that neighborhood that day. It was nerve-wracking. I was shaking for two or three hours and luckily there was no violent interaction. But it’s just scary to get your personal information taken from you in broad daylight on a busy street,” said Perkins.
With an increased focus on outdoor seating, area managers say their focus has also shifted to making them safer.
Melanie Finley with Juan’s Flying Burrito says they rely on this outdoor seating, and to take it away would take money from their business.
“We have it as well it is possible, we have cameras on it and we’re in and out of the restaurant all the time there’s always people here,” said Finley.
She says even more frustrating, among their neighborhood circles, there were a number of other businesses reporting similar incidents.
“We’re trying to see about adding more tables but we don’t want this also to be an incident where stuff like this happens more often. It’s unfortunate that we all have to be a little more wary of our surroundings,” said Finley.
Both women say they’re shocked and saddened that when so many in the city are trying to get back on their feet and “back to normal” during Covid times.
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