Receive alerts from your local agencies
...or text your ZIP CODE to 888777 for mobile alerts

Full Notification

Modesto Police Department
Thursday August 25th, 2016 :: 11:24 a.m. PDT


Witness Catches Purse Thief in the Act

Release Date: August 25, 2016
Modesto Police Department
Media Relations Unit
Office of the Chief of Police
600 10th Street, Modesto, CA 95354
Author: Heather Graves

Modesto, CA – A serial purse theft suspect was arrested yesterday after committing another robbery.

Yesterday afternoon, detectives were following up on a Crime Stoppers tip regarding a string of recent purse thefts from elderly victims ranging from 61 to 92 years of age. They were conducting surveillance on the suspect who was inside of a restaurant in the 1800 block of McHenry Avenue. While he was inside, he grabbed a purse from a woman’s shoulder. The 77-year-old victim struggled to retain possession of her purse, but was over powered by the suspect as he fled the business. A witness observed the robbery and followed the suspect to his car in an attempt to retrieve the victim’s purse. The suspect sped from the parking lot with detectives following behind him. He pulled into a parking lot at Coffee Road and Floyd Avenue and began rifling through the victim’s purse. When he looked up he was surrounded by Detectives and Officers and was taken into custody.

Ashton Reeves, 27-years-old of Modesto, was booked into the Stanislaus County Jail for eight counts of robbery and elder abuse and two counts of possession of stolen property. A booking photo of Reeves is not being released at this time.

A purse theft only takes a couple of seconds to commit. While you cannot predict when or if you will be a victim, you can take these easy steps to reduce your chances.

• Be alert to your surroundings and to those around you.
• Stay in well-lit areas.
• Move confidently and at a steady pace. Make eye contact.
• Avoid carrying a purse. Instead place your cash, credit card and identification in your front pocket.
• If you need to carry a purse, hold it securely between your arm and body. Never leave unattended in a shopping cart, on a counter or on the seat of your car.
• Be a good witness. License plate numbers, even partial ones, and physical descriptions of a suspect can be a big help in solving a crime.
• Report all crimes and suspicious activity to police immediately at 552-2470.
If you have any information regarding criminal activity, please call Crime Stoppers at (209) 521-4636. Callers to Crime Stoppers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a cash reward. Tipsters may also text information to Crime Stoppers at 274637. Just type “TIP704” along with your message.

Follow us:

Like us:

See what crime may be occurring in your neighborhood. Visit us at: or and select “Modesto Police”

Modesto Police Department
600 10th St
Modesto, CA 95354

Emergency: 9-1-1
Non-emergencies: 209-572-9500

Heather Graves
Media Relations Unit

Navigate & Discover