Suspected purse snatcher held on bond
JANESVILLE Some movie-goers got a fright, but at least they screamed loudly enough to prevent what would have been one more in a string of stolen purses, according to a criminal complaint filed Thursday in Rock County Court.
Travis J. Boerschinger, 26, of 2523 Lucerne Drive, Janesville, was charged Thursday with three counts of felony theft from person and one count of attempted theft. Police arrested Boerschinger on Tuesday and think he is responsible for as many as nine thefts or attempted thefts of purses, according to a news release from the Janesville Police Department.
Rock County Court Commissioner Stephen Meyer on Thursday set Boerschinger's bond at $2,000. He is in custody at the Rock County Jail and scheduled to appear in court Wednesday for an adjourned initial appearance.
The reported thefts took place at businesses in the retail district on Janesville's northeast side. Boerschinger stole the purses to support his heroin addiction, according to the complaint.
Boerschinger is accused of taking a purse from a woman's cart at Sam's Club on Oct. 5. Store surveillance cameras recorded what was identified as Boerschinger's image.
Another woman saw a man dressed in black going in and out of the theater at Movies 16 on Oct. 6. She got nervous and put her hand over her purse on a seat next to her, according to the complaint.
The man tried to grab her purse, but she screamed for help. Others in the theater started screaming, and a man, later identified by a friend as Boerschinger, ran empty-handed from the theater, according to the complaint.
Later that day, police think Boerschinger took a woman's purse from a poolside table at Americas Best Value Inn. At the end of the month, the purse owner learned someone had used her American Eagle credit card to buy $397 worth of clothes. Boerschinger told a friend he bought the clothes, according to the complaint.
On Oct. 8, a woman told police she and a friend chased a man out of ShopKo when he grabbed both of their purses out of a cart.
He dropped the purses but kept one wallet.
The wallet's owner identified Boerschinger in a photo lineup, according to the complaint.