Cameras show woman stealing purses from jail

Cameras show woman stealing purses from jail

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A woman is in jail after police said surveillance footage showed her stealing purses from lockers at the jail annex visitation entrance.

A victim told police she put her purse inside one of the lockers around 9:30 a.m. When she returned, she noticed her Coach purse and its contents were missing.

Police said surveillance video shows Amanda Smith, 18, rummaging through multiple lockers as she waited to be booked and have her fingerprints processed on an unrelated criminal charge. Smith took several purses and left the building.

Police said Smith then returned, stole another purse from the lockers, and left the building again.

Officers said they matched the surveillance footage to pictures of Smith, and they were able to confirm she was in the building at the same time the footage was recorded.

"No, I'm not really surprised about it. I mean, this is Memphis," said suspect's neighbor Ron Griffis. "It's kind of like if anybody's trying to sneak drugs into the jail. That wouldn't be your best place to go steal stuff, especially with all the cameras and, I imagine, the security down there."

Griffis said he has seen Smith in the past.

"They've been here a little more than two years and I haven't had any problems with them, except for their dogs," said Griffis.

The Memphis building, so infamous that it's known simply as "201", the Shelby County Jail, is filled with those accused of crimes. It's one of the last places you might expect someone to actually commit a crime while awaiting to be booked for another crime.

Smith is charged with theft of property under $500. She has court dates set for March 18 and April 18. She remains in jail. The only other charges we found on her were minor traffic violations, but now she faces two counts of theft of property of $500 or less.

We tried to talk to Smith's family, but we were told they had no comment.

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