• Bystanders corner Pioneer Square purse-snatcher


    SEATTLE - After a man snatched a woman's purse, bystanders in front of a Pioneer Square restaurant held him until officers arrived to take him into custody, police said.


    Shortly before 5 p.m. on Sunday, bicycle officers were called to a disturbance in the 150 block of South Washington Street for a report that a man had snatched a woman’s purse and a witness and patrons from the Fuel Bar and Grill were holding the man.


    The victim at the scene told police she had a large bag with her while she was sitting on a Metro bus at Second Avenue Extension Street and South Main Street.   


    When a man reached over her shoulder and tried to steal the bag, she held on, but after a short struggle the man grabbed the victim’s purse, which was inside the larger bag, and fled the bus, police said.


     A witness to the purse-snatching followed the man and alerted patrons who were on the sidewalk in front of the Fuel Bar and Grill.


    The witness and patrons stopped the man and officers were able to move in and take him into custody.


    The victim’s purse was found on the ground in front of the bar, and her wallet was recovered from the sleeve of the robber’s jacket, police said.


    Police said the man had three outstanding felony warrants for his arrest.  Two were for a felon in possession of a handgun and one was for felony theft.


    The 48-year-old man, identified as Todd VanBuren, was booked into King County Jail on charges of robbery and for the warrants.





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