Police seek suspect who uses child as distraction while she steals

by: Erica Byfield Updated:


GWINNETT COUNTY, Ga. - Gwinnett County police are looking for a woman who they said is using her 5-year-old child as a prop to run scams.

Cpl. Ed Ritter said the woman tells victims she is from Arkansas, is looking for a home to rent or buy and her child needs to use the restroom.

"There were a couple people who let their person into their homes," he said.

Ritter said the woman is in her 20s and is a suspect in the theft of a man's cellphoneThey also think she specifically targets older people.

She was recently seen on William Ivey Road and six people called police on Aug. 9 to report her as a suspicious person.

"It's just so unfortunate that people try to take advantage of the elderly like that," said Gwinnett resident Roseanne Marshall.

The police do not have a physical description of the woman. Ritter said she was last seen driving in a tan older model Crown Victoria.

Residents warn neighbors to act with caution before inviting a stranger into their home.

"A mother and a child is really hard to say no to, but you really have to keep your guard up in this world," said Maureen Haneklau.

Anyone with information as to the woman's whereabouts are asked to contact Gwinnett County police.