Cell Phone Robbery in the US on the Rise
The advancing technology has become truly tempting, not only for the millions of consumers but most especially for thieves, the USAToday.com reports.
In San Francisco, police said nearly half of all robberies occurred this year are cell phone related — many of which are taking place on bustling transit lines. In one incident, a mugger snatched a smartphone from his unsuspecting victim while aboard a bus.
In nearby Oakland, City Council candidate Dan Kalb was on his way after attending a neighborhood anti-crime meeting on Wednesday when cornered and asked to surrender his iPhone at gunpoint.
“I thought he was going to shoot me,” recalled Kalb, who had dropped his phone during the stickup. “He kept saying, ‘Find the phone! Find the phone!’”
Around Los Angeles, cell phone theft, which account for more than a quarter of all the city’s robberies, have increased up to 27 percent from this time a year ago, police said.
“This is your modern-day purse snatching,” said longtime San Francisco Police Capt. Joe Garrity, who began noticing the trend here about two years ago. “A lot of younger folks seem to put their entire lives on these things that don’t come cheap.”
In New York, police have also reported that more than 40 percent of all robberies now involve cell phones. Other cities with the highest rates of stolen and lost phones include Cleveland, Detroit, Oakland and Newark, and New Jersey