Elderly woman mugged in front of Riverhead ShopRite: police

Just after dark on Sunday evening, a 79-year-old woman was robbed of her purse in the parking lot in front of the ShopRite grocery store on Old Country Road, by an assailant who fled on foot but was apprehended by authorities nearby, according to a Riverhead police press release. 

Police said that the victim was walking towards the grocery store entrance when a man “approached and confronted the victim, grabbing her purse and pulling it hard enough to break the purse’s handle.”

Suspect Erick Contreras Guevara, 22, of Flanders, who was arrested inside a nearby DSW Designer Shoe Warehouse outlet, according to an eyewitness, was charged with a felony — third-degree robbery — and two misdemeanors: resisting arrest and obstruction government administration.

The investigation is ongoing, and police are asking anyone who witnessed the incident or has information about it to contact the department at 631-727-4500, saying the calls will be kept confidential. A manager at ShopRite said on Tuesday that she was unaware of the incident. 

A manager who was in the DSW outlet when the arrest was made told The Riverhead News-Review that a man she believes to be the perpetrator ran into the store, followed by two civilians — one of whom she believes was the victim’s son. The manager, who requested anonymity, said police officers arrived shortly after that and arrested the man. 

“It was scary,” she said.

No information was available about Mr. Guevara’s arraignment or any pleas to the charges.