Apple employees stand by as masked unarmed thieves ransack busy store, stealing $35K in products

Employees at an Apple store in Palo Alto, California stood and watched while two masked thieves casually ransacked the outlet, stealing $35,000 in iPhones, iPads, and laptops on Black Friday while shoving startled customers out of the way.

Employees can be seen watching the criminals in a viral TikTok video, not knowing what to do. Some moved customers out of the way so they would not get hurt. No one even tried to stop the thieves.

At one point, you can hear a customer asking if they should do something to stop the criminals. The Daily Mail is claiming that Apple employees told customers to stand down and not intervene.

“Yo, should we stop ’em, or what?” one customer can be heard asking as a thief stuffed phones into his bags just feet away.

“Let him go!” an Apple employee told him, throwing his hands up in the air as the thief carried on. Another employee told customers, “you gotta back up,” as the theft continued.

The assailants appeared to be unarmed during the attack. But they did allegedly threaten a customer with violence, which graduated the crime from burglary shoplifting to robbery, Police Captain James Reifschneider told Palo Alto Online.

The two masked men can be seen in the video casually walking through the store yanking devices from their security cables attached to displays and then stuffing them into bags.

A phone came loose in one of the men’s hands and it flew to the floor. He just kept going.

The theft was reported at 340 University Ave. at 4:17 p.m. The thieves fled in a red Mazda3 hatchback, according to the New York Post. Security reported that they took off north on U.S. Highway 101.

Reifschneider said, “No arrests have been made, and we have no suspect information other than both suspects were black males in their late teens or early 20s. One was wearing a blue hoodie with black pants; the other was wearing a gray hoodie with blue jeans.”

This is the same store that was robbed twice in one day in 2018. Thieves grabbed more than $100,000 in goods, according to the New York Post.

A car was also driven through the front window of the store in 2016 and thieves got away with thousands of dollars in products.

These types of robberies are now commonplace in California. Theft has skyrocketed since the pandemic occurred, according to Monterey Police Lt. Jake Pinkas.

He told Monterey County Now in an interview that authorities began identifying the crimes as a recurring issue in the fall of 2021.

“You started to see the more brazen [robberies], where they’re bringing tools in to take phones or laptops or break through glass,” Pinkas asserted. “That definitely seems to have started after the pandemic year 2020, and went further into 2021.”

In October, another Apple store was robbed of approximately $40,000 in merchandise.

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