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Elderly shopper's stolen bank card used within minutes of theft

A thief who victimized a 93-year-old woman Saturday night wasted little time in making use of her stolen bank card, running up $685 worth of fraudulent purchases in a 22-minute span, police said.

The victim, a Lewiston resident, was shopping at the Super Walmart store on Military Road in Niagara Falls around 7:30 p.m. Her purse was stolen from her shopping cart while she was loading her purchases into her car. It contained two bank cards, a set of spare car keys, other personal effects and $100 in cash.

The woman immediately reported the theft to the store's customer service center. Surveillance video of the parking lot showed a white male wearing a gray hoodie taking the purse before driving off in a four-door sedan. When store employees were helping the victim cancel her bank cards, they learned that four purchases had already been made on the cards: the first was at 7:30 p.m. for $1, the next at 7:48 p.m. for $170, the next at 7:51 p.m. for $322, and the final purchase was made at 7:52 p.m. for $192. Bank officials were unable to provide the location of the purchases.

Police are continuing their investigation.

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