I was very interested by The Post story {Metro, July 19 } about the woman who foiled the purse-snatcher by chasing him, screaming until he dropped her purse. I had a similar experience, which has ended quite differently.

On May 27, I had just buckled up my three small children -- we were headed out for pizza -- and was about to start the car, when a stranger opened the passenger door. He grabbed my purse from the floor right in front of my 3-year-old daughter and ran away. I (foolishly) jumped out of the car and chased him around a building and through two parking lots. I, too, screamed for him to give my purse back.

He jumped into his car; I hung on to the side of his car, still shouting at him, but let go when he started to drive away. I got the license number -- a local vanity plate -- and reported the incident to the Prince George's County police.

I have been told by the detective assigned to the case that the police have identified the car's owner and have his (again, local) address. Nonetheless, after two months and several inquiries from me, they have not visited the address, or questioned anyone about this crime -- much less made an arrest.

I have, of course, replaced all of my identification and credit cards, and I did not lose much money. The things that I really miss are irreplaceable. The purse itself was a gift from my 9-year-old son, and it contained two rolls of film from my sister's wedding the day before. It also held a personal journal and various other sentimental things, like the obituaries of my father-in-law's death in 1978 and some souvenirs from a college trip to Europe. I had really hoped that if the police caught this man quickly, I might get back these little things, which would be of no use to him.

I identified with the woman in the story. I am very glad she was able to retrieve her purse. I only wish the police were as motivated. MARY BAILEY Adelphi