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LAPD increases patrols in shopping malls after takeover flights

Los Angeles Police will step up patrols near retail centers to prevent group thefts after a Nordstrom break-in at the Grove Mall.

“We need to make sure the public has a sense of security,” Police Chief Michel Moore told the Los Angeles Police Commission, the department’s civilian oversight body. “We are concerned that this kind of conduct is considered permissible and that nothing could be further from the truth.”

In the case of Nordstrom, about 18-20 people showed up in four cars, smashed a window with a hammer and an electric scooter, and then burst into the store, grabbing about $ 5,000 in merchandise before to escape.

Officers nearby overheard the incident and immediately moved to apprehend the thieves, who then fled in their vehicles. One of those vehicles was chased south of Los Angeles, where three of the suspects got out of the car and were arrested, Moore said.

Inside the vehicle, police found stolen items in the Nordstrom, Moore said.

The thieves caused about $ 15,000 in break-in damage to the store, he said.

Video from the scene showed a hammer lying under a shattered window next to some clothes and a bicycle.

The chief said he was already discussing with the California Highway Patrol the possibility of working together to step up efforts against retail gangs after Gov. Gavin Newsom launched an initiative for the CHP to join an initiative at the statewide to reduce this type of crime.

The Nordstrom theft was one of many high-profile incidents over the past few days.

Thieves broke the window of a Louis Vuitton store in Union Square in San Francisco on Friday and ransacked the store. Criminals also targeted a dozen nearby stores for theft and vandalism, police said, including a Burberry and Hermes store, as well as an eyewear store and cannabis dispensaries.

On Saturday night, the raid of a Nordstrom near Walnut Creek was even more daring: just before closing time, around 80 people jumped out of a bundle of cars, like a flash mob, and invaded the aisles, many escaping with merchandise. Two employees were assaulted, one of whom was sprayed with pepper.

And just after midnight Sunday, criminals used a sledgehammer to smash the windows of a Louis Vuitton and Saks Fifth Avenue store in Beverly Hills, police said, but patrol cars arrived to scare off thieves before they did. cannot enter.

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