HESPERIA Several good Samaritans came to the aid of a woman who had her purse stolen at the Stater Bros. parking lot Monday afternoon, including a woman who took the attacker's bicycle and forced the fleeing teen to continue on foot, San Bernardino County Sheriff's Hesperia station officials said.


Investigators nabbed the 16-year-old suspect a few hours later and learned he'd escaped from a juvenile detention center in Chino, according to Sgt. Colleen Kuhn of the Hesperia station. His identity and criminal record weren't released since he's a minor, but Kuhn said he's being held on a no-bail warrant.


An employee and a passerby at the Stater Bros. on Main Street and Maple Avenue noticed a young man attacking a woman a little before 1 p.m., Kuhn said.


The thief and the Samaritan became involved in a physical fight over the victim's purse. The purse snatcher was able to get away with the victim's purse, but Kuhn said he dropped her wallet.


The crook, described as a black male, jumped on his bike and rode toward an apartment complex on Topaz Avenue, according to Kuhn.


"Another good Samaritan and his wife saw him, got into their vehicle and chased him into the field near the apartments," Kuhn said.


Cornered, the driver and the purse snatcher got into a tussle and at one point the couple was holding the attacker down in the field, but he managed to break free. That's when the thief tried unsuccessfully to carjack the couple's vehicle.


As the teen ran off, the woman was able to catch up to him and she took away his bike, preventing the purse snatcher from riding off. He instead jumped over the wall into the apartment complex on Topaz Avenue near Topaz Preparatory School, Kuhn said.


The elementary school and Hesperia High School were placed on alert but weren't locked down.


A helicopter assisted in the search, and authorities located the suspect by going to door-to-door in the area.


The woman was able to recover her purse and wallet.


Anyone with information on this case is asked to contact Deputy Mike Cleary at the Hesperia station at (760) 947-1500 or call WeTip at (800) 78-CRIME.


Beatriz E. Valenzuela may be reached at (760) 951-6276 or at BValenzuela@VVDailyPress.com.