On Sunday, April 2, robbers successfully stole 436 iPhones worth $500,000 from an Apple Store in Alderwood Mall, Washington. The thieves were able to enter the store via the bathroom of an adjacent coffee shop. The thieves who wore masks and gloves entered the store at around 7 pm after the employees had locked up and left. They were caught on camera.
According to Seattle Coffee Gear Regional Manager, Eric Marks, the thieves cut through the locked front door of the coffee shop and then bore a large hole through its toilet to gain entrance into Apple Store.
“Our front door was locked,” Marks said. “They pried our front door open. It was a 24×18 hole cut in the wall into what appears to be the back room of the Apple Store. I’m surprised we were the conduit for them to get to the Apple Store. I had no clue we were so close or adjacent to them. I would have never suspected we were adjacent to the Apple Store. So, someone really had to think it out and have access to the mall layout.”
Seattle Coffee Gear has replaced its damaged locks to the tune of about $1,800. But Apple will likely suffer a loss of about $500,000 from the heist. Police authorities said they have surveillance footage of the robbery and would be releasing it after investigations are concluded. They said the robbers stole iPhones, Apple Watch, and iPads, but did not touch Mac computers.
The PRO for the Lynnwood Police Department, Maren McKay, said the robbery was well-organized. She confirmed the robbers had masks and gloves on and did not leave any fingerprints behind. She said law enforcement is still working on the case to apprehend the robbers.
Tech analysts said Apple can block the iPhones from working remotely. Police officers opined that the robbers will likely sell off the stolen products to unsuspecting customers. Buyers may not likely be able to operate the smartphones if Apple succeeds at locking them remotely. But it is also possible to trace the sellers if law enforcement is able to apprehend the buyers.