WAFF Investigates: Gas station 'sliders' - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

WAFF Investigates: Gas station 'sliders'

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MADISON COUNTY, AL (WAFF) -

Thieves have found a new way to steal from women. They are taking their purses at the gas pump by doing something called "sliding." It happens when a suspect typically circles a gas station lot and watches for an easy opportunity to slide next to a vehicle and take things. They have been caught on tape taking purses and making a quick getaway.

Law enforcement officers in the Tennessee Valley say they haven't heard of any reports of sliding here, but they advise women to be very vigilant.

"If you are paying at the pump, you are going to be distracted,' said Lieutenant Terry Kelly with the Morgan County Sheriff's Office. "When you aren't looking and someone else is, that's what they are looking for. They go around looking for opportunities and when they find one that's what they do."

Kelly said these burglaries can be stopped by women keeping their purses out of sight or taking their purse with them when they pump gas and always locking their doors.

Toni Kelly makes it her mission to multi-task when she gets her fuel. 

"I am aware of my surroundings. If I do leave my purse in there, I just lock the door and take my keys because I have heard of other people losing their stuff like that," she said. 

Racheal Norton said she'd rather be safe than sorry when it comes to keeping her personal belongings in her possession.

"Every time I walk away from my vehicle, I lock my truck at all times," she said.

These are rules that Lt. Kelly said every woman should follow to keep from being a victim of sliding.  

"You just have to be more aware of your surroundings more than before," he said.  

For more information on sliding, visit the National Crime Prevention Council website.

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