Why waiting for coffee at the counter could make you a target for thieves

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston police want people to take another look at their habits when they're out and about. Are you attracting thieves by what you're doing or maybe what you are not doing?

"It's all about having environmental awareness because everyone who smiles here is not very friendly," said Houston police Lieutenant T. Jefferson.

Jefferson said thieves are waiting for the right opportunity and the right scenario. While working on another story with ABC13 in a Montrose coffee shop, she spotted several examples of what she refers to as a "false sense of security."

She said people should never leave purses on the floor. Thieves can easily distract you with a short conversation, throw a jacket over that purse, quickly grab both and walk out the establishment.

Police also want you to be on guard for crooks who are lurking and looking for unattended phones and laptops. Jefferson spotted many unattended electronics in the coffee shop.

She said thieves will actually listen when you give your name to the barista, wait for you to walk to the counter, then steal your belongings.

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