KATY, Texas (FOX 26)
Harris County Sheriff's Office investigators release the crystal-clear pictures of armed robbery suspects from the Katy area, and almost 2,000 people on Facebook have shared the post hoping they will be identified. The pictures are so good that some people commented that they think the men took a "selfie," but the photos are from the cameras at Woodforest National Bank inside the Walmart on North Fry Road.
Harris County detectives believe the two men in the images are the ones who robbed a Katy-area woman of $5,000 in cash.
"They pulled a gun out on us," the woman named Marcy told FOX 26 News on Thursday. "One went to my mother and one came to me to take our purses." She's probably not their only victim.
The sheriff's office tells FOX 26 that the same people may have stolen Elisa Patterson's purse at the Shell fuel station on Fry Road on the south side of the Katy Freeway.
"In the amount of time it took me to slide my card, punch my zip code in, and turn back around, they had opened my door pulled my purse out and started driving off," explains Patterson on Monday.
Law enforcement calls it "jugging." It doesn't involve being held up at gunpoint, but even having your purse stolen like that can cause an enormous financial and personal toll.
Patterson's husband is an Iraq war veteran with post-traumatic stress and traumatic brain injury. He had just given her cash from his Veterans Affairs disability check so she could pay the bills.
"I went to go get gas before I stopped at the bank, which was right across the street," Patterson says of the theft that happened on March 3. "All the money was in there." Also stolen was an irreplaceable memento of her husband's war buddies, who did not make it home alive. Their dog tags were used to make a special commemorative bracelet.
"It was melted down with their names engraved, and the days they died in the Diyala province in Iraq," Patterson says. "That was in the purse, and we can't replace that."
Fortunately, the bracelet was still in her purse when it was found, dumped at another gas station several miles away. Unfortunately, lost forever is the money, and the Pattersons' feeling of security in Katy, taken by heartless criminals.
"You don't know what situation they're in financially, or mentally or emotionally," Patterson says, shaking her head, "and you're going to steal from them."
Chances are these men in the photos have more victims, but the hope is, with these clear photos, they will be put in jail soon.