Springfield woman targeted by thieves in broad daylight

SPRINGFIELD, Mo There's been a spike in dangerous crimes against people in Springfield.

Over the past few weeks, we've told you about people either robbed or stolen from in parking lots. Now, it's happened again.

At night most of us try to be aware of our surroundings. No one expects to be targeted in broad daylight.

That's what's happened to one woman getting groceries at the Walmart Neighborhood Market on south Campbell near James River Freeway, Monday afternoon, on her way home from work.

"We're on the south side of Springfield, I never would have thought," says 'Jane'.

For her protection, we are concealing her identity.

"I was loading my groceries in my car, stuck my purse in the front turned around to return the cart and it happened," she explains.

She noticed a vehicle parked extremely close to hers. That's when she says a woman approached her. In a separate vehicle, two men grabbed her purse from the front seat of her SUV and took off.

"It could have been a lot worse. They tried to hit me as they were proceeding to leave the parking lot," she says.

"As a criminal, I don't care that you've got milk and eggs for your kitchen, I'm going to watch where you put something of serious value," explains Officer Matt Lilly with Springfield Police.

He says you have to be aware of your surroundings at all times.

"You can't trust anybody anymore. The day and times of friendly neighbors and friendly folks walking through the neighborhood or seeing somebody friendly in the parking lot, they're just few and far between," explains Lilly.

'Jane' says she thinks she was being watched.

"It felt like a setup, like had planned it, very experienced on what they were doing," she says.

Officers have this advice.

"Keep that purse on your shoulder. Keep that purse in your hand. Keep it near you wherever you are. "You should be alert, you should be watching and looking and if it truly does make the hair on your neck stand up, it's probably for a reason and you should heed that warning," says Lilly.

'Jane' says she will no longer carry a large purse and pay more attention.

"Don't be on your cell phone, don't be distracted, have your keys in your hand, pay attention at all times and go with your instinct," she says.

She's still on edge about the whole thing.

"Speechless. I see the good in people and I just never would have expected it. It could happen to anybody," she says.

It also helps to be a good witness. Police were able to get a lot of good information from 'Jane' including a license plate number.

They are working to find out if any of the string of robberies and thefts are connected.