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Public Safety

Public Safety News
Harris County Sheriff’s Office
News Release
Thursday, September 08, 2011

HCSO: Thief prays with sticky fingers

HOUSTON, TX – A woman has apparently been caught on video breaking the Eighth Commandment while at a Sunday church service; investigators with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office (HCSO) believe there may be more victims.

God and a camera were watching Cynthia Gonzalez, aka Cynthia Martinez, as she allegedly stole from a woman’s purse after the woman got up to receive communion. HCSO investigators say this was a frequent practice for Gonzalez as she’s ‘prayed’ on parishioners at several area churches.

Gonzalez has been charged with credit/debit abuse related to another church theft case in April and has been released on bond. Charges related to the case on video are pending. Gonzalez has a history of financial crimes in Harris County and Galveston County dating as far back as 1991. 

HCSO investigators would like to clear more similar cases. Victims who have had their property stolen while at church service are urged to call the HCSO’s Burglary and Theft unit at 713-967-5770.

Video of Gonzalez can be found at

Time codes:

08:45 Suspect enters and sits down

15:10 Suspect moves to a different pew, just behind victim

19:40 Suspect exchanges sign of peace with victim

23:05 Suspect is seen allegedly digging through victim’s purse

23:50 Suspect leaves church


Suspect Cynthia Gonzalez, aka Cynthia Martinez, was arrested in Florida on Sunday, September 4 and is now in custody at the Pasco County Jail. Gonzalez/Martinez (DOB 10/05/1967) was arrested after police there received a tip of her whereabouts.

Gonzalez/Martinez is currently wanted in Harris County for tampering with government records, credit card abuse and forgery.  She is also wanted out of Montgomery County and has several warrants in Florida. HCSO investigators will wait on Gonzalez/Martinez’s extradition to Texas before pursuing any further charges.

Please contact the Pasco County Jail and Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office for details on their respective cases.

Remembering Jim Guidry

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