Police: Man pretended to sneeze in order to steal 71-year-old man’s wallet

Police: Man pretended to sneeze in order to steal 71-year-old man's wallet (PHOTO: Fairview Heights Police Department)

Police: Man pretended to sneeze in order to steal 71-year-old man's wallet (PHOTO: Fairview Heights Police Department)

FAIRVIEW HEIGHTS, Ill. — Metro East Police were searching for a robbery duo who pick-pocketed a man’s wallet at a Bob Evans restaurant late October.

Police said a 71-year-old Belleville man had finished eating breakfast at a Bob Evans on Ludwig Drive around 10:30 a.m. when he paid for his meal and began to leave.

Surveillance video showed a man watching the 71-year-old from the corner of the restaurant. He was seen exiting the entryway in front of the victim. Police said one of the men allegedly sneezed, which stopped the victim from moving forward.

As the pair was stopped in the entrance, another male suspect bumped into the victim from behind.

Fifteen minutes later, the victim got an email that one of his credit cards was used at a CVS in Swansea and then noticed his wallet was missing.

Investigators said the men were able to purchase several gift cards that cost up to $2,000. The victim’s stolen wallet also had cash instead.

Fairview Heights police asked for the public’s help in identifying the robbers.

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