The Los Angeles Organized Retail Crime Taskforce (ORCT) has made 11 arrests since its creation on August 18.
The taskforce is responsible for investigating nine recent organized efforts to ransack luxury stores in Los Angeles neighborhoods. Those arrested were part of four of the nine incidents under investigation.
“Upon the inception of the ORCT, detectives assumed investigative responsibility of nine cases involving Organized Retail Crimes throughout the City of Los Angeles,” LAPD media relations said about the recent arrests. “Many of these retail theft cases have adopted linkage to other retail crimes which occurred in neighboring cities.”
The stores connected to the arrests are the Versace Store at the Beverly Center, a Warehouse Shoe Store in Highland Park, a Nordstrom in the Topanga Mall and the Yves Saint Laurent at The Americana at Brand.
These robberies have involved “flash mobs” of people running into the stores and taking as much as they can carry on their person before entering vehicles, often with covered license plates, and driving away.
Surveillance cameras have caught the acts, as well as onlookers, with the videos widely shared on social media for incidents such as the ones at the Versace store and Nordstrom.
The taskforce consists of multiple law enforcement agencies, including the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, LAPD, California Highway Patrol (CHP), Glendale PD, Beverly Hills PD and Santa Monica PD.
Upon the announcement of the task force, Mayor Karen Bass said “No Angeleno should feel like it is not safe to go shopping in Los Angeles.”
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