The New York Police Department has arrested a man they say robbed $600 from a 93-year-old woman who had the cash stuffed in her bra while she shopped.
Maria Vasquez was shopping in a Harlem department store in a wheelchair after cashing her Social Security check Wednesday when police say the brazen thief snatched the money, tucked in an envelope inside her undergarment.
A security video showing the suspect reaching into the woman's shirt to pull out the cash was shared by police Thursday, quickly drawing the ire of New Yorkers and a call to action to find the fiend.
On Friday morning, police arrested Broyoan Lopez, 26, of Brooklyn, who was charged with grand larceny, robbery and criminal possession of stolen property. He has not yet been arraigned.
Vasquez said the man must have been following her from the bank to the store. By the time she called for help, the suspect was gone.
Vasquez, who is from the Dominican Republic, does not speak English and requires an aide; she says the money was meant to last her the rest of the month.
“I use it to pay for everything. Everything I have to pay for,” she told the Daily News. “I need it ... because my husband died seven years ago, and I’m alone.”
The department store where the incident occurred said that Vasquez is a loyal customer and will replace the money that was taken from her.
A manager named William told CBS News it was the least they could do.
Vasquez, a devout Jehovah’s Witness, told the Daily News: “I felt terrible, but I prayed to Jehovah in my heart, and he helped me to bear it.” She also said she feels no ill will toward the thief.