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Fort Lauderdale Stores at Risk

More and more local stores seem to be targeted under the cover of darkness in a slew of recent business burglaries, notes Broward criminal lawyer William R. Moore. The heists are happening in Fort Lauderdale, Broward, and Fort Lauderdale-Dade Counties and appear to be the work of small groups of burglars. Unfortunately, store owners are getting late-night calls from law enforcement officers telling them the bad news or sometimes just showing up to work in the morning to find shattered glass littering the stores and parking lots.

The “smash-and-grab” burglars have been conducting operations since at least last summer. Police noticed a marked uptick beginning in July. The pattern was unmistakable: a group of burglars, rather than one person acting alone, smash the glass front of the store or remove the door entirely. Oftentimes, they smash the glass storefront with a car.

Fort Lauderdale theft defense attorney William R. Moore finds it interesting that the thieves appear to have rather varying tastes. They do not hit just electronics stores or only conduct jewelry heists. Instead, the have hit a variety of electronics stores, including chains like Best Buy and small stores such as Port Electronics, alongside a drugstore and even a Gucci location. Burglars stole prescription drugs from a Fort Lauderdale Gardens pharmacy. In some cases, the whole incident happens in less than a minute, as was the case when six thieves smashed the glass door at Computer Sights in Fort Lauderdale.

The thieves quickly grab expensive items, including video game systems and laptops. They then escape rapidly. Later, the burglars sell the stolen items on the street. Some burglars have been “dumb,” according to local police. In Hialeah, thieves smashed and grabbed electronics from Best Buy. They were so successful that the same group hit the same Best Buy just a few days after the first time they stole goods from the store, in what police labeled a “gutsy” move. Not surprisingly, they were apprehended during the second attempt.

Stores like Port Electronics have it the hardest. The small electronics store does not carry insurance. The store was hit on January 12 and, despite the loss of thousands of dollars of electronics equipment, has managed to stay open. Still, its employees are not optimistic about the future. “I know it’s going to happen again. There’s no doubt in my mind,” said Ed Blum, who manages the store. Likewise, General Manager Donald Blank of the CompUSA in Fort Lauderdale is leery. “You always have that in the back of your head,” he said.

Broward criminal lawyer William R. Moore has experience in all kinds of criminal defense, including sex crimes and DUI. A conviction for a felony or misdemeanor can have consequences on your freedom, your employment, and your personal life. If you have been arrested or charged with a crime in the south Florida area, contact William R. Moore Criminal Defense, which has offices in Fort Lauderdale-Dade, Broward, and Fort Lauderdale Counties.

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