Last Sunday (April 2, 2023), an Apple Store at Alderwood Mall in Lynnwood, Washington was robbed by unidentified individuals who broke through the wall of a nearby coffee equipment maker’s bathroom in the shopping center. The Lynnwood Police Department spokesperson confirmed that approximately 436 iPhones, Apple Watches, and other merchandise worth $500K were stolen, and no arrests have been made yet. The police spokesperson said no fingerprints have been found and the subjects who entered the Apple Store were wearing masks.

“No arrests have been made at this point, but the case has been assigned to a detective and it’s been actively investigated.”

According to a report from NBC affiliate King5, the thieves entered through the wall to avoid setting off Apple’s security system, which suggests the robbery was well-planned and organized.

It’s not the first time it happens (and probably won’t be the last)

Apple Stores have been a popular target of organized retail crime (ORC) as it accounted for $94.5 billion in losses in 2021, up from $90.8 billion in 2020, according to the US National Retail Federation (NRF).

The NRF applauded the Introduction of Critical ORC Legislation in the US Senate in January, including the Combating Organized Retail Crime Act of 2023 and the Organized Retail Crime Center Authorization Act, to strengthen money laundering statutes and allow judges to order criminal forfeiture after convictions, in order to punish ORC gangs more effectively.

This robbery is not the first time an Apple Store has been targeted by ORC (and probably, won’t be the last); in February, eight individuals were arrested for alleged involvement in an ORC gang that primarily targeted Apple Stores, causing approximately $1 million in losses.

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