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Smash-and-grab mob targets Nordstom store in brazen daytime raid

A smash-and-grab flash mob stormed into the Nordstrom store in Canoga Park Saturday afternoon, grabbed merchandise and ran out.

An estimated 30 to 50 people participated in the brazen daytime robbery shortly after 4 p.m., according to the Los Angeles Police Department.

Police described the suspects as male and female who used bear spray and left in sedans with their license plates removed. Police estimated losses to be between $60,000 and $100,000.

A shopper at the store posted a video of the chaos on X, the social media site formerly known as Twitter, capturing pillaged clothing racks, broken glass from display counters and a mannequin lying on the floor near an entrance. Hooded figures carrying and dragging multiple bags dashed among debris, as the clothing sensor tags sound in the background.

There were no injuries, according to a customer service representative who was unable to provide any further details.

Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass called the robbery “absolutely unacceptable.”

“Those who committed these acts and acts like it in neighboring areas must be held accountable,” she said in a statement. “The Los Angeles Police Department will continue to work to not only find those responsible for this incident but to prevent these attacks on retailers from happening in the future.”

A similar incident took place on Aug. 8 at an Yves Saint Laurent store at the Americana at Brand in Glendale when 30-40 people stormed the store getting away in about 20 vehicles with about $300,000 worth of merchandise. The Glendale Police Department is investigating.

On Aug. 1, the Gucci store at the Westfield Century City Mall was also hit by at least nine people.

The Nordstrom store, located at the Westfield Topanga Shopping Center, was the target of similar heist in November 2021 when robbers attacked a security guard with bear spray and stole several high-end purses.

At the time, it was one in a flurry of so-called mob thefts that were taking place in Southern and Northern California. One robbery at a Nordstrom in Walnut Creek involved about 90 people, 25 waiting vehicles and more than $100,000 worth of stolen goods. Three people were arrested and charged.

Another took place at the Nordstom store at the Grove, during which thieves stole $5,000 worth of merchandise after breaking a display window. After the break-in, LAPD Chief Michel Moore announced that he was stepping up patrols around high-end retailers.

Gov. Gavin Newsom also ordered the California Highway Patrol to increase its presence near major retailers.

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