An optometry business in Laguna Hills was burglarized and the thieves got away with about $140,000 in brand-name eyewear, authorities in Orange County said Thursday.
A dozen men broke into the store to carry out the burglary, which was caught on surveillance video from four angles.
The burglars rushed into the store in an almost clown-car-like fashion after the plate-glass front entry was smashed, the video showed. They entered and left the business in less than 2 minutes.
“I think they’re probably trying to cut down on the time they’re in the business,” Orange County Sheriff’s Department Lt. Lane Lagaret said. “I’ve never seen 12 suspects in a business at one time. This is unusual.”
The burglary occurred before 4 a.m. Monday at Blink Optometry in the 22900 block of Moulton Parkway, according to the Sheriff’s Department. Deputies responding to the business found shattered glass and a ransacked interior, but no burglars.
The burglars were described as “heavily clothed.” They fled in three vehicles of unknown make and model, the Sheriff’s Department said.
In the video, most of the men are wearing dark hoodies, white gloves and white masks over their faces.
They smashed the business’ front entry with a sledgehammer and crowbar, then used the crowbar to smash open display cabinets and remove merchandise.
The dozen burglars may be involved in other crimes in southern Orange County, the Sheriff’s Department said.
On Thursday, plywood covered the entry to the store, and the business was apparently still cleaning up.