A wave of follow-home robberies in and around the city prompted the Los Angeles Police Department on Monday to warn residents and visitors alike about what officials describe as an “ongoing crime trend.”
The LAPD’s elite Robbery-Homicide Division became aware of the trend amid a spike in violent street robberies, according to a safety alert from police.
Victims have been found and followed by robbers from places like Melrose Avenue, downtown’s Jewelry District, nightclubs and high-end restaurants.
The robbers are also looking for expensive items, like jewelry, watches and purses.
After identifying their potential victim, the assailants typically follow that person to home or work, where they rob them upon arrival, the police bulletin stated.
Arrests have been made in connection with the crimes, LAPD added, without giving a specific number.
Police provided the following tips to help community members from becoming a victim of would-be robbers:
- Be aware of your surroundings, ensuring there’s nothing unusual before getting out of your car or leaving a restaurant, stores, malls or clubs.
- When in public, be cautious of displaying purses, jewelry, watches and other luxury items.
- All suspicious activity should be recorded and reported to police. When possible, write down the descriptions of any suspicious person and/or vehicle.
- If you think you’re being followed while driving, call 911 and try to drive to the closest police station.
LAPD also gave recommendations to anyone who becomes a victim of a robbery:
- Don’t resist — cooperate, comply and be a good witness.
- Immediately dial 911. Write down what you can remember about the crime, including descriptions of the suspect(s) and their vehicle(s).
- Don’t follow or chase the assailant(s) after a robbery.