Cops need your help in reaching out, touching — and then arresting — a crew of cellular raiders who have stolen more than 50 phones from AT&T and T-Mobile stores throughout the borough.
Last Thursday, investigators released pictures of a crew of cellphone pack rats who robbed stores in Brighton Beach, Bensonhurst, Flatbush and Midwood stretching back to Sept. 16.
In each case, the thieves would sweep through the store en masse, grabbing phones left out on display. Sometimes, the thieves would cut the phones from the security wires they were connected to.
For the most part, store employees victimized by the hooligans took their lumps and improved their security, but some didn’t move fast enough with their upgrades: They were hit by the same crew a second time, police said.
Their misdeeds include:
• Swiping 15 cellphones during two different raids on an AT&T store on 86th Street between 21st Avenue and Bay Parkway on Sept. 16 and Oct. 1.
• Removing 17 cellphones from an AT&T store on Brighton Beach Avenue between Brighton Sixth and Brighton Seventh streets on Sept. 16 and Oct. 11.
• Taking four cellphones from a T-Mobile store on Avenue J between E. 12th and E. 13th streets in Midwood on Oct. 1.
• Stealing nine cellphones, as well as a laptop computer, from a T-Mobile store on Flatbush Avenue between Regent Place and Beverly Road in Flatbush on Oct. 15.
Police said none of the 10 raids were violent, save for one: On Oct. 19, the thieves threw a phone at a 27-year-old employee trying to stop them from making off with two phones from the JMS Wireless store on Flatbush Avenue between Caton Avenue and Linden Boulevard in East Flatbush. The worker suffered a cut on her nose during the skirmish.
Cops did not disclose what kind of phones were taken, but AT&T stores carry the hottest cellular brand out there — the iPhone. The pricey smart phones are constantly being stolen — albeit one at a time — throughout the borough, police said.
Anyone with information regarding these thieves are urged to call the NYPD CrimeStoppers tip line at (800) 577-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.
©2010 Community News Group
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