Sympathetic, caring, and sensitive are words often used to describe women. Recently, however, some women have been described on police news releases in a different light.
"Historically, law enforcement has seen women in more of an accomplice role, whether it's the lookout or driver. Seems currently we're seeing women take a more active role in crimes, whether it's committing the crime or assisting the person committing the crime," Sergeant Mike Kovaleff of the Palm Springs Police Department said.
The "Plain Jane" bandit, described as a hispanic woman 35 to 40 years old who is 5'4'' and 160 pounds, was just linked to a sixth bank robbery.
One of the sweet tooth robbers, the duo who stole money from a string of desert eateries, was a woman.
Weeks ago, a woman robbed the Louis Vuitton store on El Paseo in Palm Desert.
Just last year, the wife of the former Desert Hot Springs mayor robbed a bank.
Do these women use "sympathetic, caring, and sensitive" to their advantage?
"Victims or witnesses might tend to see female suspects in a less critical way, or might not identify them as suspects early on in a case," Kovaleff said.
We asked people who they initially link as suspects to crimes, and they proved Kovaleff right, saying they generally expect the suspect to be a man.
The FBI says roughly 9 out of ten bank jobs are committed by men. People we talked to say motivation isn't gender specific.
"I think it's desperation for their children, or a way to keep food on the table or a roof over their heads," Sandra Howder said.
"With the economy the way it is, I think women and men are more desperate. That leads to more men and women to commit crimes," Rick Swisher said.
Perhaps it leads to the realization that all suspects are created equal.
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