HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Police in Henrico are investigating a pick-pocketing incident that occurred on Saturday, Sept. 17, at Cooper’s Hawk restaurant in Short Pump.
Donna Harwood and her husband were out for dinner and drinks when they encountered a strange incident near the bar. A small group approached them and sat at the next table. Members of the group ordered beverages before abruptly leaving for the bathroom.
“They never came back,” Harwood said.
Harwood and her husband ignored the incident and continued to enjoy their night until her phone began to go off with alerts.
“I started getting text alerts on my phone that my credit cards were being used for fraud,” Harwood said.
With modernized and more high-tech scams becoming increasingly frequent, many view pick-pocketing as a dated avenue for crime. However, pick-pocketing is more common than some may believe. According to data from the Henrico Police Division, there have been nearly 4,000 petit theft reports so far this year.
The pick-pocketers in Short Pump stole cash and credit cards from their victims, but Harwood said the impact wasn’t solely financial.
“I had a lot of things in there, like my social security card, my out-of-state license,” Harwood said, adding, “things I wouldn’t want someone else, obviously, to have.”
Harwood’s cards were found in the Stony Point area, but she still hopes to find her wallet and other items that were taken that hold sentimental value.
“Pictures, a handwritten note from my father who’s not with us anymore, things like that,” Harwood said. “It’s the stuff you can’t replace, I think, that is the most sad part of this whole thing.”
Harwood now hopes to raise awareness that these types of crimes can occur at any moment, even when you’re least expecting it. She recently met another woman who said the same incident happened to her at Cooper’s Hawk. They believe the pick-pocketers strategically target more upscale restaurants where people may not be on high alert.
The Henrico Police Division continues to investigate this incident and are working with the different locations at which the cards were tracked to gather security footage.
Anyone with information is asked to contact the department at 804-501-5000, or submit a web tip through P3 Tips. Those who send tips using either method may remain anonymous.