The Dallas Police Department's still searching for the man responsible for shooting a 63-year-old AT&T employee in the head this morning as she and a colleague were walking to work shortly before 6. But DPD now believes that, yes, this same man is responsible for two other robberies downtown -- one that occurred about three hours before the shooting (on Commerce), another either minutes before or after (on Ervay).
A release just sent by DPD spokesman Kevin Janse follows, including the suspect's description, a summary of the three incidents and a list of seven "personal safety tips" to follow while downtown. Janse writes:
There will be increased patrols in the CBD area for the next few weeks. Cars, bikes for high visibility, but there will also be covert officers in the area looking for suspicious behavior. This will mainly be during the late night and early morning hours. Intelligence has already been distributed to property managers and security directors in the downtown area to have them update and inform their tenants.
Update at 2:54 p.m.: After the jump is a video sent by DPD taken from a downtown camera shortly before the shooting. DPD says the man suspected of committing the three early morning robberies can be seen in it. Also: The woman who was assaulted, for her purse, has since been treated and released from Baylor.
Update at 5:52 p.m.: Linda Self, the woman attacked early this morning, spoke to WFAA-Channel 8 this afternoon. The unexpurgated 11-minute interview is also after the jump. She's tough -- wants to go back to work tomorrow. And, she is pissed.
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From DPD HQ:
This morning there were three robberies of ladies by, what we believe, is the same suspect. In all three offenses, the suspect confronted his victim and demanded her purse.
The first offense took place at 2:30 am in the 4100 block of Commerce. A 20 year old female was attempting to enter her apartment complex when the suspect approached her and tried to get her attention. She ignored him so the suspect grabbed her purse and fled the location. She was not harmed.
The second offense took place at 5:40 am in the 400 block of S. Akard. A 63 year old AT&T employee was walking to work with a co-worker when they were confronted by the suspect who grabbed the woman's arm and demanded her purse. The co-worker immediately fled to call police. The suspect shot the victim before fleeing without the purse. She was taken to Baylor Hospital in serious condition.
The final offense occurred a short time later at 5:50 am in the 500 block of S. Ervay. This possible occurred because the suspect was unsuccessful in the previous robbery a few minutes earlier. The suspect confronted a 38 year old female who was walking to work. He also tried to get her attention so she began walking faster. The suspect then ran up and grabbed the woman's purse before fleeing on foot.
Detectives are talking with witnesses and the victims to try to gather a better suspect description, but right now he is described as:
Late 20's/early 30's, approximately 6 feet tall, bald, clean shaven, wearing black/white or blue/white checkered shorts.
Detectives are working with AT&T Corporate Security to see if any of their cameras caught the shooting.
There will be increased patrols in the CBD area for the next few weeks.. Cars, bikes for high visibility, but there will also be covert officers in the area looking for suspicious behavior. This will mainly be during the late night and early morning hours.
Intelligence has already been distributed to property managers and security directors in the downtown area to have them update and inform their tenants.
Personal Safety Tips in the Downtown Area.
1) Safety in numbers. Walk with a friend or group of friends.
2) Park in well lit parking lots/spaces.
3) Have your keys in your hand and ready when traveling to or from your car.
4) Utilize security (if applicable) for an escort to and from your vehicle.
5) Draw attention from others around you if confronted. Suspects will often run off if witnesses begin to come over. This can best be done by carrying a good, loud metal whistle on your key chain.
6) If confronted, DO NOT RESIST. Give the suspect whatever he/she wants. Nothing is worth your life!
7) If you can't prevent being victimized, you need to be the best witness possible. Try to remember distinctive features on the suspect (scars, tattoos etc). Write the description down right after offense if possible so you don't forget it.