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BREAKING NEWS

Everett Police:
'Beware the pickpocket pros'

March 22, 2018



Chronicle staff

(EVERETT, WA.) -- They'll pick your pockets and then they'll pick your credit card apart until it won't buy anything anymore.

They'd pick your brains if they could and sell them on the black market for transplants They are wanton criminals, say police, and they want your money.

It's all rude and disgusting behavior. It's also illegal.

Everett police say, "Recent reports indicate victims are being "bumped" into or distracted at area businesses. Victims later realize their wallet is missing and their credit/debit accounts have been used. Detectives are investigating to develop suspect information."

KCPQ TV in Seattle talked with one woman who got pick-pocketed around noon March 7th at Panera Bread at 304 SE Everett Mall Way.

She was at the kiosks and it was crowded. Somebody "bumped" past her to get to a kiosk and that bump was all it took. Within minutes the scoundrels had used her stolen cards to buy $14,000 worth of laptops and other items at Best Buy and other stores.

The report says video of the stores shows six perps in all. Detective Jamie French told the station the pattern of these crimes now happening in Snohomish County is tied to a "multi-state series of thefts" committed by an extremely large and organized group of individuals. Police spokesman Aaron Snell told the station the gendarmes believe there are currently more than 50 people involved.

Police remind law abiding citizens (you) with money in their pockets and credit cards that work, that criminals are not necessarily "sleazy people lurking around" (although they can be that from time to time).

Sometimes though they look just like "normal" people (whatever normal is). So here's the tips police say will help you stay protected from pickpockets and the odd vampire:

~ Be aware of your surroundings
~ Store valuables in your front pocket
~ Carry purses & bags diagonally across the front of your body
~ Take only what you need - remove extra credit/debit cards, ID, checks, cash, etc.
~ Don’t leave your purse unattended
~ Keep zippers zipped
~ Shorten the strap on any purse or bag you are carrying
~ Cover up electronics
~ Don't cuss, take the Lord's name in vain or chew tobacco.

Actually, we threw in that last one. Wanted to see if you were reading down this far. And you were.





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