Family Warns of Potential Scheme Against Shoppers

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - As we enter into the busiest shopping season of the year, police are encouraging us all to be aware of our surroundings. 

"I try to just pay attention. Be ready to go at all times," Erika Churchwell, a shopper at Shackleford Crossings said.  

Churchwell takes precautions to not be the next victim, like checking her surroundings, having her keys at the ready and not leaving valuables in her car.  

 "It seems like every time I come to this parking lot, it seems like there's a lot of stuff that happens over here," she said.  

A heightened awareness she attributes to a recent tragedy, when her husband's co-worker, Susan Grissom, was killed in Memphis last week. 

"She had left Costco, had come home and she was robbed and gunned down," Churchwell said.  

The 21-year-old accused killer stole her debit card. But when he tried to use it, he was caught on surveillance video. 

Kurtrell Williams was arrested hours later. 

A story Churchwell doesn't want repeated. 

"Certainly I have been approached many times here lately of people coming to the vehicle asking for things, and you know often times you want to help, but you also want to make sure that you're safe," she said.  

A recent Facebook post with more than 1,500 shares shows a concerned mom texting her family about a woman she encountered at Shackleford Crossings in Little Rock. 

The woman says she was flagged down by another woman in the JCPenney parking lot. 
In the post she described stopping the car and cracking her window. 

The woman said her purse had been snatched and and "begged" to get in her car and "chase the man down." 

The driver didn't let her in. She ran off but kept flagging cars down. When the driver called 911 and police arrived, the woman was gone, according to the post. 

"There's always things that people are coming up with, new ideas to try to get people out of their vehicles or get them where they can take advantage of them," Lt. Michael Ford with Little Rock Police Department said. 

In this case no report was filed but Lt. Ford said it was still the right move to call police. 

"If you're getting hair standing up on the back of your neck, you probably want to go ahead and drive off and notify police," he said. 

A reminder shoppers like Churchwell are taking seriously and some even changing their shopping habits. 

"We will probably do a lot more online shopping for Christmas this year," she said.  


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