At least 20 involved in burglary, looting incident at Los Angeles Nordstrom
LOS ANGELES, California - At least 20 suspects attempted to break into a Nordstrom store at The Grove shopping center in Los Angeles, California Monday night. The burglary was followed by a high speed police chase as some of the suspects attempted to evade capture, CNN reports.
The incident occurred at the Nordstrom department store at The Grove retail complex in Los Angeles, where a storefront window was smashed in and a sledgehammer was left on the ground, local news station ABC 7 reported.
Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department were involved in the chase after suspects fled in at least four vehicles. At this time, it is unknown if the suspects were taken into custody or able to get away.
Unfortunately, this was not a lone incident. The reported burglary at The Grove is the most recent in a series of similar crimes.
About 80 suspects were involved in what police are calling a "smash-and-grab" incident Saturday night at a Nordstrom location in Walnut Creek, near San Francisco.
Looters fled the store in at least 10 different vehicles, Lt. Ryan Hibbs at the Walnut Creek Police Department told CNN and three suspects were arrested.
One eyewitness told reporters, "There was a mob of people. The police were flying in. It was like a scene out of a movie. It was insane. ... It was a scary scene for a moment."
Police have not yet estimated a dollar amount for the stolen items, Hibbs said.
A series of similar robberies occurred Friday night in Union Square and surrounding areas in San Francisco.
Targeted retailers during Friday's burglaries included a Louis Vuitton store, a Burberry store, a jewelry store, a Bloomingdale's, a Walgreens, multiple cannabis dispensaries, and an eyeglass shop, San Francisco Police Chief Bill Scott said at a news conference Saturday.
Yet another smash and grab burglary occurred in Illinois last week.
On Wednesday, at least 14 people forced their way into a Louis Vuitton store in Illinois' Oak Brook, area and stole at least $100,000 in merchandise, according to the Oak Brook Police Department.
Police told reporters the individuals had garbage bags with them as they rushed into the store at Oak Brook Center Mall. They took out the garbage bags and began filling them with items. Surveillance video from the store showed the chaotic scene as the masked shoplifters made their way into the store and grabbed as much merchandise as they could while shoppers hurried to get out of their way.
Investigators have information on the three vehicles the thieves drove away in, according to Police Chief James Kruger.
In October, another incident took place in the Chicago suburb of Northbrook, where police say eight people got away with $66,000 worth of merchandise from a Louis Vuitton store at Northbrook Court Mall.
"We don't know if there is an actual connection yet, but certainly there are similarities," Kruger said.
Organized burglary and looting attacks on popular stores appears to be a growing concern that authorities are attempting to address.
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