LAS CRUCES, N.M. -

Las Cruces Police have arrested a man for allegedly ripping a purse off the shoulder of a 71-year-old woman who was shopping on Thanksgiving evening.
 
Manuel E. Armijo, 27, is charged with one count each of robbery and tampering with evidence.
 
Shortly after 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 28, Las Cruces Police were dispatched to the parking lot of the J.C. Penney store at the Mesilla Valley Mall.

According to police, a 71-year-old woman and her brother were loading merchandise into a pickup when a man approached from behind and allegedly ripped the purse from the victim's shoulder. The woman was not seriously injured.

Later that evening a Las Cruces Police officer on routine patrol spotted a van matching the description of the one the man got in and stopped it on Roadrunner Parkway.  Armijo was the passenger in the van and officers found a checkbook belonging to the 71-year-old victim of the robbery on the vehicle floorboard.
 
Detectives learned from the driver of the van that Armijo was responsible for stealing the woman's purse. No charges were filed against the driver of the van.
 
Armijo was booked into the Dona Ana County Detention Center with bond set at $10,000.