HOUSTON -- A single mother has a warning for other women after she was blindsided in a popular crime referred to as sliding.
Kerry Gates was focused on the pump back on January 15 at the Shell gas station located at 14555 Cullen Boulevard.
A gray Highlander parks nearby. In just about a minute, surveillance video shows a man get out of the Highlander, crouch down and creep toward Gates car.
The man opens Gates driver s side door, snags her purse and disappears before Gates notices anything.
It s not just a hassle. My life was invaded and my privacy is gone, explained Kerry. They had my license. They had my address. They had my house keys. They were one block up on Cullen using my credit cards.
Employees inside the gas station watched the crime play out live on surveillance video.
The man who was parked next to Gates ran outside and tried to intervene. By that time, it was too late.
I go, it can t be mine because mine is locked. I check the handle, and it s not locked, recalled Gates.
Gates insists that she locked her doors before she started pumping gas. She s still confused as to how the crook got away with it.
I want women to know, your car s not safe. Don t leave anything in it. Take your purse and hang it on you, said Gates. You are just a number to these people, and it s going to happen.
Gates didn t know that the criminal who targeted her was connected to other sliding cases.
She was watching the news Thursday afternoon and saw surveillance video of the same criminal committing the same crime at a different gas station.
Houston Police believe the serial slider has targeted women at five different gas stations throughout the greater Houston area.