Only on: Small business owner on a desperate search for men who stole a purse full of $10,000 after a day’s work

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A small business owner is desperately searching for the three men suspected of stealing her hard-earned cash from inside her vehicle as she cleaned up after a day’s work.

Jess, who wished to remain mostly anonymous and off-camera for fear of retaliation, owns a small business where she makes and sells various pet products. She was working at a pop-up event at Row DTLA over the weekend, with a little help from her mum on Sunday, when she was robbed of all day earnings in less than a minute.

After filing a police report with the Los Angeles Police Department, Jess hopes to find the three men who can be seen in surveillance footage provided by Row DTLA. The footage shows them taking her mother’s purse – full of cash – from the front seat of her car, placing it in a black bin bag and driving away.

“It was very heartbreaking to see that,” Jess said. “It’s traumatic to think about it now. But it was my mother’s whole identity in there. Not just money and money, but her ID card, pictures of us as family.”

Jess’ mom put the purse in the car to help her daughter clean up after the event. In addition to the money that was taken, her mother’s cellphone and other items inside the purse, she estimates that approximately $10,000 was stolen.

“She feels guilty for losing the money I made that day,” Jess said. “Every time she looks at him, she’s like, ‘What if?’ What if I knew something like this could happen? That’s why we really think it’s important to tell the community about it.”

Echoing a well-known sentiment from law enforcement, Jess is now warning those around her to stay alert and avoid placing valuables inside your car, even if only for a minute.

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