NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – Police are searching for three suspects who are wanted for more than a dozen robberies. Investigators say they lure drivers in a flat tire scheme and then snatch valuables from inside the car.
Police say the trio has hit at least 16 times since August. The first dozen robberies happened in Queens, but they’ve recently spread to other areas including First Avenue and 82nd Street on the Upper East Side.
Investigators say in every case, one of the suspects alerts the car owner that they have a flat tire. While the victims inspects the damage, the other suspects grab money, purses and other personal items from inside the car.
In some cases, police said the tires are actually slashed. In others, the suspects only claim they see a flat tire to distract the victims.
The suspects will also sometimes pretend to be construction workers, wearing vests and hats or one suspect sprays victims with an unknown substance while the others act like they’re helping.
Anyone with information should call police or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or visit www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.