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Ruthless rest stop prowlers: Help ID couple seen using credit cards stolen from cars while victims used restroom

WANTED BY WASHINGTON STATE PATROL —
A warning from the Washington State Patrol: Beware of thieves lurking at rest stops.

Troopers are asking for your help to identify a couple after two women had their car windows smashed-out when they stopped to use the restroom along the I-5 freeway in Federal Way.

Within hours, the suspects were using the victims’ stolen credit cards. “She came into a Battery Plus store and she walked up to the counter and looked like she was going to try to buy a battery or something to test the credit card most likely, said WSP Trooper Rick Johnson.

The woman had reddish-brown hair that troopers are hoping somebody recognizes. “You see her at the counter and you can see, by her body language, she’s not very happy, you will see that ultimately the credit card was declined.”

That’s because the owner had canceled it after it was stolen during a car prowl on March 12th at the northbound Federal Way rest area.

“These individuals are looking for a crime of opportunity, ‘Smash and Grab,’ where they see somebody pull in. They know they are going to the bathroom. They are basically casing the parking lot,” adds Trooper Johnson.

Just two and a half hours later, detectives say the same woman and a man were seen at Safeway on 320th in Federal Way and at the gas pumps. “In the video, you see the male suspect kind of fidgeting around the car. They were driving a tan-gold Chrysler Town & Country with a mis-matched right, front wheel. You see her go in and talk to the cashier. Troopers say she used the card to pay for  gas and sundries while he stayed outside. “To me, in looking at the video, he`s nervous. It appeared to me that he kept looking inside where she was, probably trying to see is this card is going to work. He can`t sit still."

Eventually, she comes out. He pumps the gas while she gets on her phone. Troopers say the suspects also tried to use one of the stolen cards at a Walmart store.

“This is something that is going to continue to occur especially with these two individuals,” Trooper Johnson says. “We really would like to get them captured and also to let the victims know that this is what we`re doing. We`re using Washington’s Most Wanted to help us with this because it`s a great avenue to get this out there.'

Again, she had reddish-brown hair.

He was dressed in black and had short facial hair.

It's possible they had a child in the van, but troopers don't know for sure.

If you know either of their names, Crime Stoppers will pay you a cash reward of up to $1,000 if it leads to their arrest.

Call the hotline at 1-800-222-TIPS, or submit the information using the P3 Tips App on your phone.