Purvis-Mitchell collared for stealing donation jar

GUILDERLAND — Nine months after a donation jar was stolen off the counter of a jewelry store in Crossgates Mall, Guilderland Police have arrested one of the three suspects.

Guilderland Police Chief Carol Lawlor said this week that Sergeant Roger Ginder “never let the case drop” and worked on it whenever he had a chance, which led to the arrest of one of the suspects, Tyler Purvis-Mitchell, on Dec. 20.

On March 25, an employee of Hannoush Jewelers, located in Crossgates Mall, called the police to report that a donation jar had been stolen, and that three suspects had been observed on video surveillance, according to a press release from the Guilderland Police Department.

The three suspects entered the store together, one took the jar from the counter, and all three left together, the release said.

Albert Hannoush, owner of Hannoush Jewelers, told The Enterprise this week that he was glad the Guilderland Police Department hadn’t given up on the investigation.

He also said that the larceny had a silver lining.

The donation jar, which was for The Children’s Hospital at Albany Medical Center, contained $300 at the time it was stolen. After customers found out about the larceny, they donated $2,000 to The Children’s Hospital.

Purvis-Mitchell, 19, of 2 Sard St., Albany, was identified through the surveillance video, and located in Albany County’s jail, where he was being held on unrelated charges, said the release.

He was charged with one count of petit larceny and arraigned at the Guilderland Town Court. Bail was set in the amount of $2,500, and Mitchell was returned to the Albany County jail.

The other two suspects have not been identified.

“We are lucky that the case was solved through Ginder’s determination,” said Lawlor.

 “Our customers have been so generous,” said Hannoush. “They turned a negative into a positive.”

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