Suspect Lured Purse-Snatching Victims Through Dating Sites, Cops Say
Riverside Police Department
Oscar "Manny" Mandujano-Quinonez allegedly used online dating sites not to steal hearts but to steal purses. The Riverside Police Department is investigating Mandujano-Quinonez, who was arrested yesterday on suspicion of grand theft, for several incidents, according to Detective Bryon Adcox.
"We found multiple victims and their personal belongings," Adcox says — and there may be more. So far three victims, from Moreno Valley, Hemet and Riverside, have been identified, according to the detective. "One woman got ripped off a couple months ago, and the case spiraled from there," he says.
The Riverside case stems from an alleged theft in mid-November. Police allege that Mandujano-Quinonez encountered a woman through a dating site and set up a meeting.
"While inside his vehicle, a silver Saturn, Mandujano created a ruse to get the victim to step out of the car," according to a Riverside Police Department statement. "Once the victim exited the vehicle, Mandujano fled at a high rate of speed with the victim’s purse and belongings still inside his vehicle."
Police say he targeted another woman for a Monday night meetup. But that would-be victim already had gone to police after Mandujano-Quinonez's name made the rounds of social media, where single women were warning one another about a potential thief on the loose, according to Adcox.
Instead of meeting his date that night, Mandujano-Quinonez was greeted by police who placed him under arrest, the detective says. Police soon discovered he was wanted, based on a warrant, for similar allegations in nearby Moreno Valley, according to the Riverside PD. Credit cards, IDs and passports belonging to the victims were recovered, Adcox says.
"Mandujano listed his victim’s stolen property for sale on a popular online site," according to a statement from Riverside police. "Detectives searched Mandujano’s Perris home and found evidence from the listed crimes as well as property from additional women who are also believed to be victims."
The suspect has been released on bail, according to Adcox. Anyone with information about him is asked to call detectives at (951) 235-7863.