SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — The latest violent crime in San Francisco’s Westfield Mall has police looking for a group of kids this time.
The violence only happened after the suspects stole a couple of laptops.
This is now the second violent crime inside the Westfield Mall in the past three weeks.
There are plenty of places for people to sit and use their laptops on the fourth floor of the mall.
San Francisco police said a group of young people worked together to create a diversion.
“One of the subjects started to make some loud noise, bang on a rail behind one of the victims, and they turned around and the suspect distracted them and took off with one of the victim’s laptops,” San Francisco police spokeswoman Giselle Talkoff said.
The two people started running after the kids to get the computer back. But the second person realized too late that he had left his computer and cellphone behind.
When he looked back, another suspect from the group was swiping them too.
“At some point, one of the suspects confronted the second victim and punched the victim in the face,” Talkoff said.
That makes the crime somewhat similar to one earlier this month, where three men robbed and beat another man inside the mall restroom.
They also beat up a second victim who came to see what was going on.
On Tuesday, people at the mall using their laptops didn’t seem to think of it as a huge deal.
“It’s a little bit worrisome perhaps, but I feel pretty confident I could chase ’em down if I needed to,” mall patron Atakan Cetinsoy said.
But perhaps the most surprising part is that based on the description the victims gave to police, the thieves were anywhere from 12 to 15 years old.
“That is pretty young to be committing crimes, but we do see that occurring,” Talkoff said.
And in a place like the mall, police said criminals can make an easy getaway into the street.
So far, the suspects haven’t been caught.
Police are working with mall security to track down surveillance video, hoping they can identify the five African-American teens in the group.