The string of Apple Store robberies in California continued over the weekend — but, on this occasion, everything didn’t go quite as planned for the thieves.
As is becoming routine at this point, a gang of thieves (six in this case) ran into an Apple Store in California’s Santa Rosa Plaza shopping center, and started snatching devices from the stands. However, while five got away with their stolen goods, one was tackled to the ground by mall security and two good samaritans.
@SantaRosaPolice here is my video of these guys stealing phones at the Apple store at the Santa Rosa plaza pic.twitter.com/ekfH8eg8wT
— JC (@GoonerYoda) September 23, 2018
“I was at the Santa Rosa Plaza and I saw these six guys in jeans and hoodies making their way to the Apple Store,” one onlooker told The Sun newspaper. “I knew something was about to go down.” The onlooker was able to capture footage of the arrest, which was then sent on to police.
Another Twitter user captured footage of the theft itself. It appears that the person who got caught was the last of the thieves to leave the Apple Store.
The incident took place just after 1pm local time on Sunday, September 23. Police confirmed that the thieves stole multiple devices.
“The theft is currently being investigated by the Santa Rosa Police Department’s Property Crimes Investigative Team,” a spokesperson said. “We are looking for any cell phone video, photographs or any other information leading to the identification of these thieves.”
The Apple Store crime spree
Apple Store thefts have always been a problem, due to the potential resale value of the devices and the relative lack of security compared with, say, a jewelry store where merchandise is kept locked away. However, it’s in the past few months that it’s really become an epidemic, particularly in California.
Locations targeted have included Emeryville, Santa Rosa, Marin County and Fresno. One unlucky Apple Store in the Roseville Galleria mall was even robbed four times in 20 days — including twice in less than 24 hours.
Apple has tried to crack down on the crime spree by making its display items unattractive to thieves through installing special versions of its software on display devices. These stop the demos units from working if stolen from stores.
However, this strategy seems not to be working. Recently, San Francisco Police Officers Association President Tony Montoya said that one deterrent would be having uniformed police officers on-site. He pointed out that stores in San Francisco with police on patrol have so far escaped being targeted by robbers.
Source: The Sun