Three people walked into a Seal Beach T-Mobile store last week and started yanking display phones off their stands in front of two employees and a customer, authorities said Monday.
Police said they got a call about the commercial burglary around 5:15 p.m. Tuesday at the store at 13979 Seal Beach Boulevard.
Security camera video shows two employees standing near the registers as the suspects broke off several phones from the display stands and took other boxes of electronic accessories before running out. The phones were attached by cables to the shelves. The thieves were unable to break off most of them. In the video, one employee appears to be calling someone as a customer stands behind the employee counter with the other onlookers. The suspects were not armed, Sgt. Nick Nicholas said.
The store estimated the loss at about $4,000 worth of electronics, police said. However, it’s unclear what the resale value of display phones is.
This type of robbery, however brazen, is not uncommon, Nicholas said.
“By the nature of the crime, they’re in and out so quickly that they’re already gone by the time police get there,” Nicholas said. “Definitely mobile phone stores like that are targets for burglaries.”
Police said they arrested one suspect, 18-year-old Ali Dawson from Los Angeles, as he was driving away from the store. He was the only one in the car and was arrested on suspicion of felony commercial burglary, according to authorities. Investigators found that he is a named suspect in multiple crimes of a similar nature around Southern California, police said.
Police are asking for the public’s help in identifying the other two suspects, whom they believe fled the store in another vehicle. All the suspects were wearing masks for the pandemic, which obscured their faces.
Police asked that anyone with any information contact Det. Jorge Muniz at [email protected] or 562-799-4100 ext. 1108.