A woman got away with minor injuries after police in Anne Arundel County say she was the victim of a carjacking as she arrived at a grocery store Thursday afternoon.
Investigators said officers were dispatched to the front Safeway parking lot in the 7600 block of Arundel Mills Boulevard in Hanover at about 12:30 p.m. for a reported strong arm carjacking.
According to police, the 55-year-old woman told them she parked her vehicle in a parking spot when a man walked up to her driver's side door and demanded her keys.
Police say the suspect forced his way inside the woman's vehicle.
"When he initially entered the car, he forced her into the rear portion of the car, there was a struggle of some sort in the vehicle, he ultimately gained control of the vehicle. She fortunately was able to get out. She managed to call 911," Justin Mulcahy, Public Information Officer with Anne Arundel County Police, said.
The woman escaped but so did the suspect.
He drove off in her car which is described as a green Dodge Caravan with Maryland tags 657M318. The car also has tinted windows and dent on the back.
"I think that's pretty insane, you know, you come into the store to get a couple things and it's broad daylight and you think you're safe and you're not. Someone is willing to go to extreme measures to cause you harm. I think that's sad that the world has come to this," Rachel Gelin, a Safeway shopper, said.
"I think it's kind of crazy that something like that would happen around this area because I tend to come here often and I haven't heard of any crime being prevalent in this area, especially at a Safeway. They tend to have really good security most of the time, so it's pretty surprising," Jennifer Grier, another shopper, said.
Mulcahy said the suspect was last scene driving the victim's vehicle through the parking lot toward Ridge Road.
Police are calling the man in the surveillance video they have released a person of interest.
The woman described her attacker as a black man in his 30's with a light complexion, approximately 5'10'', average build, short black hair, freckles and says he was wearing an orange jacket or sweatshirt.
"We're treating this as an anomaly. There's no reason that shoppers should adjust their shopping habits," Mulcahy said.
Police say the woman was treated at the scene for minor injuries she suffered in the struggle with the suspect. They added that no weapon was displayed or implied during the incident.