Don't leave your purse in the car or you could fall victim to the Felony Lane Gang, which has made its return to northern New England, according to three Maine police departments.

Police in York and Kennebunkport warned of a Florida-based group of identity thieves that travel across the United States targeting places where purses are often left in vehicles like dog parks, fitness centers, tennis courts, and walking trails. When members of the gang, who are mostly women, spot a purse, they will smash a window and take it.

They will remove items like checkbooks, credit cards, drivers licenses, and other items in order to commit financial crimes.

Members of the gang will recruit other members to cash checks often in the drive-thru lane farthest from the bank in an attempt to avoid detection, according to Kennebunk police.

Bath, Maine, Police reported several thefts they connected to the gang on January 5 at gyms, the YMCA, and other places a purse would likely be left behind.

"Please take your valuables out of your vehicles, lock your vehicles. This group will smash windows if they see valuables in vehicles. If you see something suspicious please report it," York police wrote on their Facebook page.

A Return to Northern New England

It's not the first time they have been in New England.

Two Fort Lauderdale, Florida, men pleaded guilty to their roles in the gang in December, according to United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman of the U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of New York. Joshua Mallory, 37, and Gary Grier, 36, in December admitted they stole $95,000 between 2015 and 2020 in thefts around the Northeast from Pennsylvania to Maine.

They were involved in thefts in Biddeford, Brunswick, Portland, Saco, Sanford, and York, Maine, as well as Portsmouth and Somersworth in New Hampshire and Salisbury, Massachusetts, according to Freedman.

Portsmouth Police warned about the gang in February 2018 after a warrant was issued for the arrest of a member for two incidents of trying to cash fraudulent checks at banks  in Dec. 2017 and Jan. 2018.

Members of the gang were also connected to 10 incidents in just one week in Londonderry and Windham in 2018, according to a NBC Boston report.

Five members were arrested in a room at the Red Roof Inn in Salem in February 2016, according to Salem Police. Police found identification not belonging to people in the room and items stolen earlier that day from a child care center parking lot.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNH

20 of the Best Italian Restaurants in New Hampshire

Readers shared some of their favorite local restaurants to enjoy a fine Italian meal.

More From Seacoast Current