Six more suspects, including four minors, have been arrested in connection with a series of smash-and-grab robberies in Los Angeles retail shops, authorities said Thursday.
The incidents occurred at four locations on Nov. 22, Dec. 3 and Wednesday, the Los Angeles Police Department said. In one robbery, one of the suspects pushed a pregnant employee to the ground, police said.
Maricio Ulloa, 19, is charged with burglary and Angel Torres, 21, was arrested on suspicion of robbery.
SMASH-AND-GRAB ROBBERIES PLAGUE CITIES WITH LIBERAL DISTRICT ATTORNEYS
The other four suspects were not identified because they are younger than 18.
The LAPD did not say how much in merchandise was lost to the thefts but flash mobs have been known to ransack businesses for thousands of dollars worth of goods in a matter of seconds.
The thefts were the latest in a wave of robberies featuring groups of thieves who brazenly enter retail shops and smash glass displays to steal jewelry, designer bags and other luxury items, sometimes in the presence of shocked onlookers.
Critics have blamed California’s zero-bail rules for incentivizing such criminal behavior. The state moved to temporarily end bail for misdemeanors and lower-level offenses in an effort to reduce the jail population during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“All the suspects taken into custody are out of custody, either as a result of one juvenile, or the others as a result of bailing out or zero-bail criteria,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore said last week after 14 suspects allegedly linked to 11 robberies were arrested.
Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon, who has supported ending cash bail for low-level, non-violent offenses, said his office will hold smash-and-grab participants accountable.
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“These brazen acts hurt all of us; retailers, employees and customers alike,” Alex Bastian, special advisor to Gascon, told Fox News last week. “We will hold those responsible accountable.”