Would-Be Robbers Follow 81-Year-Old Woman Home From Grocery Store, Steal Her Purse and Drive Away — They Picked on the ‘Wrong Person’

MOUNT POCONO, Pa. (TheBlaze/AP) — Police say an 81-year-old Pennsylvania woman chased down robbers who stole her purse, ramming their car with hers and leaving damage that helped officers apprehend them.

Alice Makla was sitting her car in her Mount Pocono driveway on Tuesday when she was approached by a man and woman. As she talked to them through an open window, one grabbed her purse and they fled in a car.

Pocono Mountain Regional police say the woman took off after them and hit their car, but the duo drove off.

Image source: WNEP-TV
Image source: WNEP-TV

Steve Jabara, who is Makla’s neighbor, arrived about 20 minutes after the alleged robbery.

“One of the fellows reached in and grabbed the purse. She was talking to them, the window was open and they ran with it and she tried to chase them,” Jabara told WNEP-TV.

Officers found their damaged car in a grocery store parking lot.

Image source: WNEP-TV
Image source: WNEP-TV

Thirty-four-year-old William Hayhurst and 30-year-old Erin Vanmatre were arrested and arraigned Wednesday on robbery and other charges.

Police say the suspects targeted the woman after seeing her with cash at a pharmacy. WNEP reported the two took $140 out of Makla’s purse before throwing it out of their window.

Police later recovered some of the things that were in Makla’s purse. Makla has “pretty much gotten everything back,” according to the Morning Call newspaper.

“Good for her,” Maria Depinto said. “They actually picked on that wrong person. Wrong day to pick on her.”

Jabara added, “She [Makla] was pretty brave, actually. She doesn’t think so, but she was.”