An island woman scaled a concrete wall and broke her leg in pursuit of a purse-snatching suspect but managed to hold on to the man until help arrived, authorities said.
Jacqueline Boss, 44, remained hospitalized Wednesday at Clear Lake Regional Medical Center in Webster, awaiting surgery. She chased a man police accused Tuesday of stealing women’s purses at Tortuga’s Mexican Restaurant and Float bar.
Lindsey West was waiting at a patio table on the check at Tortuga’s, 6010 Seawall Blvd., at 8:35 p.m. when a man with a star tattoo on his neck swiped her purse, police said. West didn’t chase the man, but told police she could identify him.
About an hour later at Float, 2828 Seawall Blvd., Heidi Lawrence, 32, left her purse at the table with Boss. A man with a tattoo on his neck then swiped Lawrence’s purse, Lt. D.J. Alvarez, a Galveston police spokesman, said.
The man police identified as Joshua Corey Griffin, 21, is 6 feet tall and weighs 190 pounds, police said. He ran down the bar’s wheelchair ramp and scaled a 5-foot wall behind the business, Alvarez said. Boss, 5-feet 7-inches tall and 115 pounds, gave chase, Alvarez said.
“He jumped the wall, I jumped the wall then I heard my leg snap,” Boss said.
“I grabbed his T-shirt and yelled at some guys at the bar. We spun around. I was knocked to the ground and it took five guys to jump him and hold him down.”
Police were prepared to charge Griffin with robbery, but the Galveston County District Attorney’s Office authorized only a misdemeanor theft charge, Alvarez said. The theft charge was authorized based on the information police provided, Galveston County Criminal District Attorney Kurt Sistrunk said.
Meanwhile, Boss, slated to have surgery Thursday, expects to have pins placed in her leg.
“I’m 44 years old, and I jumped that wall like I was 24,” Boss said. “My leg snapped right below the knee. He was trying to say we jumped him for no reason.”
Officers recovered both purses and returned them to their owners, Alvarez said.
Bond for Griffin was set at $5,000 on a misdemeanor theft charge. He remained jailed Wednesday. His jail booking photo reveals bruising and two black eyes, but police said he suffered cuts and abrasions when he went over the concrete wall.