Cell phone burglaries are increasing and thieves aren’t letting up. With the latest cellular phones hitting the market and selling at a retail price of $400 or more, criminals are anxiously wanting a piece of the action.
More and more police departments are receiving reports of cellular phone store burglaries. Thousands of dollars in losses due to stolen equipment and property damages are becoming a norm regarding cell phone companies.
The target of burglars in many of these crimes has been high-end cell phones like iPhones, Samsung Galaxies and Notes.
Criminals are stealing the phones, shipping them out of the country to have them activated and selling them at double the price.
Some of the criminals have gained access to the cellular phone stores simply by breaking the glass to the storefront and entering the property; others have attempted to remove the entrance door with a chain attached to a getaway vehicle; while some have crashed their vehicles into the store; and the more clever criminals have masterminded a way to access the property through either the roof or roof vents.
News Reports of Criminals Gone Wild –
30 stores throughout southern California were burglarized from November 2012 until May 9, 2013; police set up a sting capturing 5 suspects linked to the string of cellular phone thefts.
In Houston, TX: “A surveillance camera caught the crash on video. It shows the vehicle smashing through the burglar bars and then backing out of the store. Three suspects wearing hoodies then ran in and stole several phones before speeding away in the truck.
Officers said the men involved in the crime have probably hit other stores in similar fashion. The truck they used, which was reported stolen two hours before the smash-and-grab, was found at a nearby apartment complex.” KHou.com
Amarillo cell phone store robbed at gunpoint:
“Two female employees working at the time of the robbery told police that a man entered the store with a handgun and demanded money and phones. One employee went to the back room with the man and gave him cash. The man also took three phones from the store and left. He was last seen running north from the store. The suspect was wearing a black ski mask and a black hooded sweatshirt.”
Man arrested for stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars in mobile phone devices:
“The investigations in Arkansas consisted of Little Rock, North Little Rock, Cabot, Beebe, Stuttgart, Magnolia, and Lonoke. It is estimated the property taken from these burglaries is around $300,000. The property consisted of electronic equipment in the form of smart phones and iPads. The businesses which had been burglarized were cell phone stores. The reports show a similar method of entry in each Central Arkansas theft. The suspect broke into the back door of a store and often times cut wires to the store’s surveillance video before the thefts took place.”
Most stores had a surveillance camera system but all that did was record the crime taking place with little to no description of the suspects committing the crime, and in one case, it captured the license plate of a stolen vehicle used to commit the crime but nothing further.
Had these store owners and managers invested in a security guard service, more than likely, these criminals would have gone to the next cellular phone company that did not have a guard on location.
As times get harder and jobs get harder to come by, crime will continue to rise and criminals will react accordingly. Criminals have discovered a way to build a quick gold mine from the cellular phone industry, and unless manufacturers of these phones come up with a way to prevent activation, more and more wireless mobile companies will be reporting property damages and losses.
To avoid becoming a target of cellular phone store burglaries, call on SRS Services; we will keep your phones, equipment, devices and staff properly protected.