A new form of business theft has not only formed, but has risen up around the country, and it entails large groups of people overwhleming a store or business, and walking out with merchandise.
On May 23rd, a group of teens entered a Dunkin Donuts business in Manhattan and simply ransacked the business. They hustled through customers, pulled down chairs and furnishings, and then simply stole donuts and beverages from the refrigerators.
The teens left almost as quickly as they came in.
It’s like a flash mob gone bad. Security footage from a Manhattan Dunkin’ Donuts shows a group of youths climbing on counters, throwing chairs and throwing tables in a violent attack on workers.
It happened at the Dunkin’ Donuts on Christopher Street in Greenwich Village. A $2,000 hot chocolate machine was reportedly destroyed in the attack.
Similar attacks have targeted other stores in the neighborhood in the previous weeks.
The video shows one of the teens throwing a chair and then running up to grab a donut.
A few of the attackers also grabbed drinks out of a refrigerator near the door, and they all quickly ran from the store. – My Fox NY
This isn’t the first time this type of theft has occurred in Manhattan, and not the first time as well outside of New York City. In early May, a group of young adults in a ‘flash mob’ setting entered into the G-Store Raw in Washington DC and subsequently looted the clothing store of more than $20,000 in merchandise.
(See both videos of events to the left of this article)
Police in both cities have been unable to determine if these thefts are the result of a gang of culprits, or simply a spur of the moment choice by teens to act in unison to rob a business. Few arrests if any have been made, and the flash mobs act so fast in their activity that the authorities do not arrive on the scene until well after the thefts have taken place.
Youtube, phone texting, and other mass communication devices have made the putting together of a flash mob to do all sorts of action very easy. With many businesses in New York and Washington DC unable to defend themselves because of city gun laws, most are very easy and low risk targets for teens that act in a group, and are difficult to pick out on video, or by standby customers.
Flash mob theft for businesses is growing, especially in cities along the east coast. And with the geographical size of places such as New York and Washington DC, and the ability for young adults to communicate and form these groups in a short amount of time, law enforcement has limited ability to profile when and where the next attacks may occur.