Business owner plans changes after having wallet stolen by 'customers'

(SOURCE: submitted)
(SOURCE: submitted)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - A small business owner said she feels betrayed at the way people she thought were customers happened to be criminals inside her boutique.

Brenda Welch said two of her customers stole from her right underneath her nose and spent thousands of her hard earned money around town. All of it was captured on surveillance.

"Well, I felt betrayed," Welch said.

Welch owns 7th Avenue on Poplar Avenue and said a brazen theft last Friday started with her helping out two innocent looking women, one an adult, and the other a teenager.

"They came in and said they were looking for a gift for their grandmother, a birthday gift," Welch said.

She said the younger woman brought her over to ask about the price of a hat, but that was just a distraction.

The adult went into the office and snatched Welch's wallet right out of her purse.

"You see her peeking out and going in and then coming out with my wallet in her left hand, and I stood here with her still talking with her while she had my wallet under her left arm and holding it real tight," Welch said.

She said right after the two thieves left her store, they headed straight to Target. From there, they went on a $2,800 shopping spree using Welch's credit cards.

"I just lost it, because I've never had anyone betray me to the point of taking my wallet," Welch said. "And took all my identity, my social security card, my driver's license, everything."

Welch said this experience is forcing her to make some changes.

"I believe it comes time now with the crime in Memphis to add on more employees," she said.

Welch is asking for the public's help in catching the two people responsible.

If you have any information on the identity of these two individuals, call Memphis Police Department.

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