Boro Park Woman Tracks Down Credit Card Thief in NYC
She may consider herself a typical Orthodox Boro Park housewife, but the New York City police department is likely to think of 24-year-old Dina Wohlhendler as a potential member of its ranks following her gutsy actions last week, when she tracked down the thief who had stolen her credit card during a shopping expedition.
The incident began when Wohlhendler was busy shopping at Zara’s and suddenly realized that she could not find her wallet, which was filled with a lot of cash, along with several credit cards and a debit card. The young woman figured at first that she had left it back at her office, which is just one block from Zara’s, so she started to return there. While on the way, she received an alert from her bank stating that someone had just charged $211 to her debit card at an Urban Outfitters store in Manhattan.
“I knew that Urban Outfitters had opened up a new location on 43rd and 5th, and I wasn’t far from there,” Wohlhendler told Sandy Eller of Vos Is Neias. “I ran over and asked the cashier if they remembered anyone making a large purchase, but there were no customers that stood out in their minds.”
Back out on Fifth Avenue, Wohlhendler decided to walk uptown in an attempt to see if she could locate the thief by herself. Spotting a Best Buy store a block away from her, she instinctively went inside, where she saw a woman who was carrying an Urban Outfitters bag in the process of buying a cell phone. Wohlhendler approached the customer and discovered that the woman was handing in a credit card that had the Boro Park resident’s name on it.
“I started yelling at her,” said Wohlhendler. “At first she denied that the card was mine, but then she started yelling at me. She started running away towards the back of the store, but I ran after her, calling for security. She started throwing the merchandise from Urban Outfitters at me, then some cash, then my wallet, screaming ‘Here is your stuff back, it is just a mix-up.’ ” Responding to the tumult, the store’s security staff held the customer and ordered the two women to remain where they were until the police would arrive and sort out the situation.
“As we were waiting, she said to me, ‘You have your stuff back, this is just a waste of time,’” recalled Wohlhendler. “Then she took another tack saying, ‘I am Muslim, you are Jewish. You are all greedy, why can’t you just let it go?’ ” The police soon arrived on the scene and quickly determined that the customer was attempting to cover up improper actions.
Identifying the suspect as Tywanda Deckard, the officers took her in for questioning and then officially arrested her on several charges, including grand larceny and possession of stolen goods. The authorities also discovered that this was not Deckard’s first brush with the law, as she had been released on parole on June 10 after being convicted on two counts of identity theft.
“The police were amazed that I got everything back,” Wohlhendler disclosed. “One of the officers jokingly handed me his shield and thanked me for doing his job.”