Authorities in Tennessee are hoping the public will help them arrest a suspect they say was caught on camera attacking an elderly woman outside of her church this week.
According to WREG, the Nashville woman had just left Lebanon Road Church of Christ Tuesday when a nearby surveillance camera captured the mugging as it happened.
As the footage reveals, an individual in a silver Dodge pickup truck appears to stop near the victim in the parking lot, rip her purse from her hands and accelerate away.
The disturbance knocked her harshly to the pavement. She reportedly sustained facial injuries and fractured hand bones in the attack.
Investigators have since identified Gilbert D. Ostring Jr., 48, as the man driving the truck. Police believe he was able to convince the woman to approach his vehicle under the pretense of asking her about local shelters.
When the woman’s purse was within arm’s reach, the suspect grabbed it in a violent fashion that earned a stern rebuke by law enforcement.
A Metropolitan Nashville Police Department statement described the mugging as “something that should never happen, much less to a female senior citizen leaving a church Bible study.”
Police have secured an arrest warrant for the suspect. Ostring is described as a convicted criminal who has been previously found guilty of charges including theft, forgery, identity theft, fraudulent credit card use and reckless aggravated assault.
He had been serving a prison sentence until his release less than a year ago.
Authorities say he was driving the Dodge seen in the video, which had Tennessee tags with the number 8K76T3. They are seeking tips from the public in an effort to locate him.
Anyone with information leading to a conviction in the case could be eligible for a cash reward by calling Crime Stoppers at 615-742-7463.