NASSAU COUNTY, Long Island - Police are investigating a possible connection between two similar crimes against elderly women on Long Island.
Around 11:30 a.m. Monday in East Rockaway, a man walked up to an 83-year-old woman as she was putting packages in her car in the Best Market parking lot on Atlantic Avenue.
The suspect said he would put the cart away, but after the victim got into her car, the suspect returned and got into the car as well.
The Nassau County Police Department said the victim tried to get out, but the suspect grabbed her arm. She managed to pull her arm away, get out and yell for help.
The suspect fled. No injuries were reported.
The subject is described as between 5 feet 7 inches and 5 feet 10 inches tall, with facial hair, in his 30s, wearing dark clothing and a dark baseball cap.
In another incident, on Sunday afternoon, authorities said someone approached an 85-year-old woman in a Westbury Walmart parking lot as she was getting into her vehicle. He demanded money before forcing her into the passenger seat, taking her keys and driving to a Chase Bank in Elmont.
He had a knife, forced her to give him her ATM card and PIN number, then withdrew an undisclosed amount of cash, according to the NCPD. The victim was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
Police are trying to determine whether the same man is responsible for both incidents.
"Very very strong similarities. At this point we cannot state conclusively that it's the same person," said Nassau County Police Lt. Richard Lebrun.
Investigators are not yet calling it a pattern.
"At this time it's unknown, but the definite target is elderly females, we believe, and the need for currency, money," said Lebrun.
The suspect is described as being in his 20s, around 6 feet tall with a thin build. He was wearing a dark baseball cap.
Detectives request anyone with information regarding this incident to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-TIPS.