Car drives through Apple Store Berkeley in smash-and-grab burglary

“A car was driven through the glass façade of the Apple store on Berkeley’s 4th Street in the early hours of Friday morning,” Tracey Taylor reports for Berkeleyside.

“The incident appears to be a deliberate smash-and-grab case as several items were stolen from the store, according to the Berkeley police,” Taylor reports. “The car, which went right through the front of the store at 1823 4th Street, damaged both the front doors and the roll-up metal security gate, leaving a trail of broken glass.”

“BPD received a report of an alarm from the Apple store at approximately 2:52 a.m., according to BPD spokesperson Officer Jennifer Coats. Once on scene, officers found an empty car, surrounded by debris,” Taylor reports. “‘There were signs of prowl inside the business,’ Officer Coats said. “Officers conducted a check of the business and did not find any suspects. The subsequent investigation revealed several Apple products were stolen. Based on the information at this point, it appears the suspect deliberately drove the vehicle into the store in order to burglarize the business. The investigation is ongoing.”

A car smashed through the glass façade of the Apple store at 1823 4th Street in Berkeley. Photo: Mickey Novello
A car smashed through the glass façade of the Apple store at 1823 4th Street in Berkeley. Photo: Mickey Novello

Read more in the full article here.

“Vehicular smash-and-grabs have become increasingly common at Apple stores around the world thanks to the high resale value of the merchandise on display and Apple’s unwillingness to mar the stores’ aesthetic with hefty security features,” AppleInsider reports. “Apple’s Kurfürstendamm store in Berlin fell victim to such a crime last December, while the Lincoln Park outlet in Chicago and the Temecula, Calif. location have also seen similar vehicular violence.”

Read more, and see more photos, in the full article here.

Related articles:
Apple Retail Store in Berlin hit by smash-and-grab; display merchandise stolen – December 23, 2013
Apple Store Opera in Paris robbed of $1.3 million worth of products on New Year’s Eve – January 1, 2013
BMW X5 drives into Apple Store in brazen burglary (with surveillance video) – September 13, 2012
1 killed in shot to head, 2 arrested in shootout at Apple Store Otay Ranch – April 4, 2011


      1. Exactly. It’s pretty clear given the last couple of years’ events that Apple is going to have to get more serious about physical security. Nice stainless Bollards in higher-risk locations looks like it might be a good place to start.

  1. Apple should be able to track down the MAC addresses and the locations of anything stolen as soon as it gets connected to the internet. If not, they need to develop that simple concept. Word would get around fast.

    1. So, the burglar sell’s the computers and makes off with the loot, while the victim first gets to lose his money and then maybe get a conviction. Burglar is happy and the victim pays twice.

        1. And actually, no need to track down the stolen item’s location. Just develop a remote “Brick” command that turns the device into a doorstop.

          1. So you think the new “kill switch” mandated by CA government would stop stupid criminals from stealing the car in the first place and/or them driving them through the stores?

            Maybe they should instead mandate kill switches in cars and then they wouldn’t have a 4 thousand pound weapon to use.

            I think most criminals are pretty stupid and would still try it even after the kills switch comes into effect. So, will it stop crime or these idiots from wreaking a building and doing the damage? Ah, I think not.

            1. I know that. I don’t think governments requiring a kill switch on phones is going to stop idiots from trying to steal devices.

              But I do think if they are going to “mandate” a kill switch on anything, it should be vehicles instead. Seems to make more sense to me and most crimes made by criminals and involve vehicles cost the tax payers and private citizens much more then a phone.

              Geez, maybe we could have ended the whole OJ chase a little sooner. haha

    2. Except that MAC addresses aren’t seen beyond the local link. Each router along the way replaces the “from” MAC address with its own before forwarding the traffic onward.

      1. Obviously, but that’s irrelevant. Apple’s software runs the device; it can simply forward the device’s IP address to Apple’s own server and instead of activating the device, it’s bricked.

        1. Sorry, I meant to write “it can simply forward the device’s MAC address…” They then add outside IP, geolocate, subpoena address from ISP, and report it all to the authorities. In a case like this, where there’s serious property damage, the local PD would be all over it.

            1. “the abundance of free wifi networks” is exactly how Find My iPhone/Mac/Thingie works. How else are you going to find mobile devices that don’t have GPS built in?

            2. If you’ve ever zoomed in on Find My Mac, you’ve probably noticed that your device is not precisely located. My device is currently showing as being in my neighbor’s driveway rather than here in my home office. What the Mac is doing is supplying to Apple the SSIDs of all WiFi networks currently broadcasting themselves for discovery. Apple queries a database of known SSIDs for their location and attempts to triangulate your position. There is a great deal of error in such a computation, however, as well as many ways for the system to be fooled. When these capabilities were first being rolled out, we were demonstrating them using our own demo equipment, which the location database believed to be at our homes. However, since we carried our access points with us to conferences and site demonstrations, Find My Mac would regularly show our “location” to be hundreds if not thousands of miles distant. Conversely, if you are sitting at a street cafe accessing the free wifi from across the street and down two establishments (because you are within range) the dispatched police would show up at the wrong establishment and you might be both alert enough and suspicious enough to make your retreat after seeing them arrive. To make matters worse, plenty of Linksys owners never change their SSID from the default “Linksys” which further confuses the location algorithms if you are either on “Linksys” or within range of one or more of them (Manhattan apartment buildings being perfect examples of such).

              And in all of these cases, your device is leased an IP address for a period of time, after which it can be leased to another device, which inserts enough doubt into the equation to make it unacceptable in legal proceedings — if you’ve read accounts of police making arrests you probably have read where the police require proof in their presence, like using Find My iPhone to command the lost sound be played and the police were able to hear it themselves, giving them the justification they needed to conduct a search.

              The point is that the problem is more complex than we would like it to be, and there are smart people in all sectors of the industry working on it, but the “it should be easy to…” suggestions are uninformed.

        1. The IMEI is unique to the device. If the stores were to scan the IMEI of every cellular-capable iDevice they brought into inventory then they could reach out to the stolen ones and brick them. But having devices (like Macs) have to check in to be allowed to continue operating carries shades of the Xbox One fiasco and bothers the privacy rights folks and… and… and….

  2. Sensor to detect high speed vehicle approach. Concealed foot-thick steel posts ram up, just outside the wall of the building. Surely they can do something!

  3. Somewhere in Seoul, unnamed Samsung executives just came up with the idea of crashing bigger vehicules into their stores. My spies told me they secured a dozen Lamborghinis and 2 armored tanks.

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