Group of thieves target luxury store in SoHo, steal high-end bags worth nearly $50K

SOHO, Manhattan (WABC) -- The NYPD is once again, protecting a high-end luxury store in SoHo.

After thieves robbed Celine Boutique in the middle of the day, police believe five suspects grabbed and made off with several bags.

Police say the five suspects hit the boutique store on Wooster Street around 12:30 p.m.

They say two men entered the store and pretended to shop. They then pretended to exit the store, leading to the guard opening the door for them.

That's when three additional suspects entered the store, joined the two original suspects and removed the merchandise.

According to police, the stolen merchandise totals just over $48,000.

They used force against employees and fled in a Toyota Venza.

Some shoppers in SoHo on Thursday, say they are not surprised by the robbery.

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It's a far cry from the looting and lawlessness that ravaged SoHo in the summer of 2020, but in case high end luxury stores become a target here again, businesses are prepared.

Eyewitness News reporter CeFaan Kim spoke with several store owners in SoHo.

Many of them say they communicate with each other through a message thread and learn about incidents like this from each other before learning about it from law enforcement.

Meanwhile, countless stores keep their doors locked during the day even as they remain open. And many still have private security standing outside.

It is the latest robbery in a disturbing string of highly orchestrated and violent heists nationwide.

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Smash and grab thieves have hit high end stores in Los Angeles repeatedly, putting the LAPD on high alert.

Thirty thieves hit a Best Buy in Minneapolis on Black Friday.

In Soho, it's made some question whether they should stick around.


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