Smash-and-grab thieves target eyeglass store, make off with more than $20K
FAIRFAX COUNTY - A group of smash-and-grab robbers targeted a Virginia eyeglass store outside of Washington, D.C., stealing more than $20,000 in merchandise, according to police.
"Detectives are following up on leads and are aware of similar incidents throughout the National Capital Region," Capt. Frederick Chambers, Commander of the Criminal Investigations Division of the Fairfax County Police Department, said in a press release on the matter Thursday.
Police released video footage of the scene showing four Black males between the ages of 17 to 23 wearing gloves, masks, and hoods or hats while stealing from a MyEyeDr. store in Alexandria.
"The cops are on their way man," a person is heard telling the men in the video as they smash a glass case.
Multiple display cases in the video are seen shattered, with the men picking through the glass to take the merchandise. Apparent employees of the store are also seen in the video standing back as the men take the items.
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The incident took place on April 19 at about 6 p.m., according to police. Police are looking for the four men in the video, as well their getaway driver, who was waiting for the smash and grab looters in an "older-model black Toyota Camry with tinted windows and black hubcaps."
They made off with more than $20,000 worth of merchandise, according to police.
"Detectives continue to work with our law enforcement partners in the region to identify the suspects involved in this incident and are closely examining others that fit this same troubling pattern. We are asking for information from our community and reminding them they can remain anonymous through our Crime Solvers tip line," Chambers added in the press release.
At least three other eyeglass stores in the Washington, D.C. area were targeted earlier this year by smash and grab thieves, including two stores in northern Virginia.
Smash and grab crimes have hit states across the nation in recent months, most notably in California over the holiday season. Groups of looters have targeted high-end retail stores including Nordstrom locations, marijuana dispensaries and jewelry stores, typically making off with thousands of dollars in merchandise.