New Bedford police searching for suspect in violent purse theft

NEW BEDFORD, MASS. (WHDH) - New Bedford police are searching for a suspect accused of attacking a woman and running off with her purse Thursday morning.

Lucille Silva was strapping her 4-year-old daughter into her car seat outside their Dartmouth Street home when she says a man suddenly came up behind her and grabbed her.

Fearing the worst, Silva tried to fight the man off

“I was petrified,” she said. “I didn’t know what he wanted. I’m thinking he wants me, he wants my daughter.”

Silva tried to shut the car door in an attempt to shield her daughter as the man allegedly attacked her without a word.

“I was beside myself yelling, screaming from the top of my lungs,” she said. “For some reason, that morning, there was just nobody there.”

That is when the man reached around, grabbed her purse and took off.

Silva says she and her daughter are shaken up over the incident and they want to see the man who attacked them behind bars.

“She’s a mess. She’s scared,” Silva said of her daughter. “She thinks he’s coming after her, she’s having a hard time going to sleep,”

The suspect, who was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt with white lettering and blue cargo pants, tried to use Silva’s credit cards at a store just a short time after the assault.

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