A Nordstrom in California was robbed Saturday night, after a hoard of looters swarmed in terrorizing and assaulting shoppers and employees, ripping off bag loads of merchandise and ransacking shelves before fleeing in several vehicles waiting for them on the street.
In a Sunday morning news release authorities said that Walnut Creek police investigators are in the process of reviewing surveillance footage to attempt to identify other suspects responsible for this brazen act. Lieutenant Ryan Hibbs said that three people were in custody – an 18-year-old man from Oakland and two people from San Francisco, ages 30 and 32.
NBC’s Jodi Hernandez posted this video, showing some arrests being made:
The 18-year-old was charged with robbery, possession of stolen property, conspiracy to commit burglary and possession of burglary tools.
The second suspect, a female, was arrested for unlawful possession of a firearm. And the third suspect was arrested while getting caught on foot. He was also charged with robbery, possession of stolen property, conspiracy to commit burglary and possession of burglary tools.
The police found stolen property from the looting and a firearm in their vehicle.
It all started around 9 PM on Saturday night when the Police started receiving calls from Nordstrom employees about the looting. There were approximately 80 individuals who ran into the store and began looting and smashing shelves.
“On Saturday evening, a large, coordinated group of individuals entered our Walnut Creek store and began looting. Thankfully, nobody was seriously injured; five employees who sustained minor injuries have been treated and released. The safety of our employees and customers is our top priority, and we’re doing everything we can to support them through this situation. We are working with the Walnut Creek Police Department in their active investigation.” Nordstrom officials said.
One of the managers of P.F. Chang’s restaurant across from the Nordstrom store, Brett Barrette saw the whole thing: “I probably saw 50-80 people in like ski masks with crowbars, a bunch of weapons. They were looting the Nordstrom,” he said, continuing: “There was a mob of people, the police were flying in. It was like a scene out of a movie. It was insane.”
He was also worried about the safety of the diners in his restaurant, adding: “I had to start locking the front door, locking the back door. You never know, they could come right in here. It was crazy … All the guests inside were getting concerned. It was a scary scene for a moment.”
Walnut Creek police said in a community advisory posted about 3:30 PM Sunday on social media that the police department “is actively monitoring intelligence that indicates the group of thieves who stole from the Broadway Plaza Nordstrom last night are considering similar activity later today. This has not been confirmed but, out of an abundance of caution, we’re alerting businesses and residents to be prepared.”