Looters strike high-end San Francisco-area stores for third day in a row
Looters have targeted Bay Area businesses in California for the third consecutive day, this time robbing a jewelry store and Lululemon outlet.
On Sunday, police in Hayward, Calif. responded to calls from stores at the Southland Mall. That same evening, a group of suspects robbed a Lululemon store in San Jose, according to a local CBS affiliate, KPIX.
The calls about suspects at the mall came from multiple stores as thieves briefly took over a jewelry store and caused a large disturbance in the mall, KPIX reported.
Witnesses told the local news station that roughly 40 people arrived at Sam’s Jewelers with hammers and other tools that they used to shatter gas cases before fleeing the scene.
“We saw all the other stores closing. They were panicking, so we were panicking and quickly closed our store and barricaded ourselves,” a woman who worked near Sam’s Jewelers said to KPIX.
One witness described the looters as “kids.”
“I would say at least 30 to 40 [people] from what I saw,” the witness said. “But then after the main group of kids rushed out, we saw 15 to 20 scattering, some even came back in.”
“It was very scary,” another witness added. “People with no morals, no sense for other people’s safety. I feel helpless. It’s disturbing.”
Meanwhile, in San Jose, a group of people left the scene of the Lululemon store with stolen merchandise prior to police arriving.
The robberies came after upscale retailers including Yves Saint Laurent and Louis Vuitton were looted and vandalized in the San Francisco area on Friday.
On Saturday, looters struck at a Nordstrom store in Walnut Creek, Calif. about 25 miles east of San Francisco. On Sunday, the Walnut Creek Police Department issued a statement saying that they were “investigating what was clearly a planned event.”
“Walnut Creek Police investigators are in the process of reviewing surveillance footage to attempt to identify other suspects responsible for this brazen act,” the statement added.
The Walnut Creek Police posted a tweet warning that the thieves could be “considering similar activities later today.”
“This has not been confirmed, but out of an abundance of caution, we’re alerting businesses and residents to be prepared,” the tweet said. “There is no specific time or target known right now.”
The Hill has reached out to the San Jose Police Department and to the Hayward Police Department for more information.