Gwinnett County police identified this woman, who they believe is tied to the theft of 26 cellphones, on Monday after asking for the public’s help. (Credit: Gwinnett County Police Department)

Suspected cellphone thief identified from selfie-quality photos

Gwinnett County police have identified the suspect tied to the theft of more than two dozen cellphones from a single vehicle by using selfie-quality surveillance photos.

Authorities said that, late last month, a resident of Lawrenceville’s Christiana Drive reported more than $5,000 worth of electronics — including 26 cellphones, “several” SIM cards and a speaker — had been stolen from her car. The woman works for a cellular store and was preparing for a promotional event, Gwinnett County police spokeswoman Cpl. Michele Pihera said.

Detectives eventually traced the stolen phones to “EcoATM” machines — which allow users to sell cellphones for cash — at Gwinnett Place and Sugarloaf Mills malls.

“A female is photographed selling all 26 phones to the machines over the course of (three days),” Pihera said in an emailed statement.

Police released surveillance photos Monday from those ATMs that show a female suspect with hair dyed bright red. Pihera said in an email Monday night that the lead investigator was able to identify the woman after receiving several tips.

The name of the woman, as well as any possible charges against her, will be released once police get an update from the investigator, Pihera said.

Reporter Daniel Funke contributed to this article.

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