Shoppers are being warned to be on their guard after three incidents of pick pocketing in Wetherby.
And now police are urging people to be extra vigilant while out shopping.
PC David Muscroft of the North East Leeds Crime Reduction unit of West Yorkshire Police said: “We tend to find that pick pockets target, particularly the elderly, in crowded shopping places such as Wetherby, do their deed and then disappear.
“It is a problem in all areas but wherever you get supermarkets you tend to get this problem.”
Police said that an elderly woman discovered her purse had been stolen after she was bumped into while out shopping between 1.55 and 2pm on March 29.
The suspect is described as a woman in her early 20s, slim and carrying a bag.
In the second incident in the Horsefair Centre, between 2.30 and 2.45pm the following day, a purse was lifted from an unattended bag.
On March 31 an elderly woman had her purse snatched while in Morrisons at 10.10am.
The suspect is described as an Eastern European woman, about 5’6” tall with dark brown shoulder length hair and wearing a black coat.
The alert came as Wetherby and District Crime Prevention Panel and the police were out in force handing out Lanyards to shoppers.
The devices attach the purse to the shopping bag.
Witnesses to the incidents should phone police on 0113 2413639.