COLUMBUS – Fairfield County sheriff reported today that they have seen some of the thefts from groups that were described in Columbus Operation “Game Over” during the past few months.
The sheriff listed a few reports that have happened that were related and asked for people to be aware of their surroundings when they were out.
Columbus Police launched a operation called “game over” targeting a large group of juveniles that are reenacting crimes they have seen on a popular video game Grand Theft Auto.
Crimes that have been attributed to Game Over in Fairfield:
*Theft at CW Kroger. Female reported while loading groceries into car, suspect black female jumped out of car grabbed her purse got back into the vehicle and fled the scene.
*Theft/Robbery at CW Walmart. Same suspect grabbed a women’s purse and tried to get back in the car. Victims gave chase and got the vehicle by the pharmacy. Female got out of the car and was held down by victim’s friend. Victim tried to get her purse back out of the suspect vehicle. Male suspect driver then pulled a knife on the victim who let go of her purse. Male got out of the car. Victim’s friends released black female. All suspects got back in the vehicle and fled with the purse.
On Jan. 17, 2021*CW Walmart. Victim reported she was loading groceries into her car and a female jumped out of a passing car and stole her purse and fled the scene.
On Dec. 22, 2020*Theft, 6647 Winchester Blvd, Caller was loading groceries in the trunk of her car when a juvenile child ran up and grabbed her purse. Child fled and jumped into a waiting vehicle and sped off.
Original Story Below:
From the beginning of December 2020 through the end of January 2021, law enforcement in Central Ohio noticed a significant uptick in crimes involving juveniles stealing purses off of lone females and then stealing their automobiles.
A large majority of these stolen cars were found to have been used in additional crimes. These crimes have increased in violence and propensity since December of 2020. As a result, over a dozen Central Ohio law enforcement agencies have been working in conjunction with each other in order to identify individuals involved in these crimes and conduct arrests when appropriate.
Investigators from multiple agencies met and discussed the crimes being committed. It was found that the same patterns of crimes were being committed by three groups of connected individuals made up of approximately 40 juveniles. Like the video game Grand Theft Auto, the juveniles have been committing purse snatching in order to steal automobiles. Once cars were stolen, they were then used to carry out a series of additional crimes.
A video with Columbus Police can be found here: https://www.facebook.com/ColumbusPolice/posts/10158064440171762