SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) – San Francisco is seeing a spike in thefts of wristwatches, sometimes valued in the tens of thousands of dollars, police stated in a press release Thursday.
This year alone there have been 24 watch robberies, the San Francisco Police Department stated.
“Investigators believe suspects are specifically targeting victims they believe to be in possession of watches valued in the tens of thousands,” the press release states. “These investigations are being led by the SFPD Robbery Detail. Investigators believe these robberies are organized and coordinated by multiple suspects.”
Police stated that these incidents are much like “similar robberies regionally and state-wide.”
“As a result, the SFPD is working with our local and state law enforcement partners to arrest and hold these suspects accountable,” the press release continues. “Many of these incidents are occurring in high-traffic, popular destination spots in the city. The SFPD has increased their presence in these areas. Investigators from the robbery detail are following-up on each report and following all investigative leads that will lead to the identification and arrest of these suspects.”
The SFPD did not respond immediately to a request for comment asking for more details on the thieves’ modus operandi.
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The department gives these tips to keeping your watch from being the next stolen in this spree:
- “Be vigilant, alert, and mindful of your surroundings
- Keep valuables out of sight, or leave at home
- Trust your intuition. If something feels weird, trust your instinct, and change the situation
- Safety in numbers – walk and travel with others
- If you are the victim of a crime, do not fight back. The suspects are often armed. Your watch can be replaced, you cannot. Then call 9-1-1 immediately.”
Anyone with information about these investigations is asked to call the SFPD Tip Line at 1-415-575-4444 or Text a Tip to TIP411 and begin the text message with SFPD. Tippers can remain anonymous.