Search for suspects in grab and go burglary

October 19, 2011 2:40:30 PM PDT
Surveillance video highlighted a retailer's worst nightmare: a team of shoplifters ripping him off.

As Doug Grater opened his Cobble Hill boutique Wednesday morning, he was still fuming about Tuesday's blatant heist.

"It's a hit. You might as well close the store for the day. You lost a lot of inventory," said Doug Grater, the boutique owner.

Grater says the three thieves were able to stuff the pricey merchandise into bags while the lone sales person was distracted-fixing a computer problem.

"They got about 15 jeans, you know. Close to $200 each," Grater said.

This is not the first time this store's been hit.

In fact, several businesses along busy Smith Street say shoplifting is a constant problem.

"It's not just this store. It's all the stores. Lucky Brand up the block, something else all the time," said Sharon Laguda, a sales associate.

At nearby DNA Footwear, the sales associates say keeping track of merchandise and customers is especially difficult when groups of teenagers descend upon the store.

"Whenever they see the chance that there are no people on the floor, there's just one female, they grab the show and they ran," said Max Ikromov, a sales associate.

While there are security cameras there, merchants believe a bit more attention from the police would go a long way.