The Los Angeles Police Department this week issued a safety bulletin warning locals of an ongoing trend in robberies targeting people in affluent areas, and urged victims to “operate and comply” with the criminals.
LAPD said there has been a rise in the number of victims who have been followed back to their home or business by the attackers who are predominantly targeting victims who have expensive jewelry, including watches and necklaces, as well as expensive purses.
Officials said victims have been followed home from places that include Melrose Avenue, the city’s Jewelry District, nightclubs, and high-end restaurants but noted that the ongoing robbery trend has occurred throughout the City Of Los Angeles and neighboring cities. LAPD stated that many different suspects have been identified and arrested so far.
“Due to an increase in violent street robberies, Robbery-Homicide Division has become aware of an ongoing crime trend of follow-home robberies. Suspects have been locating victims in Los Angeles, following them, and then committing the robberies as the victim arrives home or at their business,” the alert reads.
In its alert, police shared a list of recommendations for community members to follow to stay safe amidst the spate of robberies and urged citizens to monitor their surroundings when leaving restaurants, malls, or clubs and to keep an eye out for unusual activity.
They also warned Los Angeles residents not to display high-value possessions such as watches and jewelry and to report any suspicious activity to police.
“If you are being robbed, do not resist the robbery suspects, cooperate and comply with their demands. Be a good witness,” police said. “Do not chase or follow the robbery suspect out of your place of business or home. Leave the job of catching the suspects to the police, ” LAPD added.
According to LAPD Compstat data, there were 704 robberies in the city in October alone and a total of 6,799 this year to date, although this is a 15 percent decline from 2019.
On Wednesday, TV host, actor, and reporter Terrence Jenkins, who goes by Terrence J, narrowly escaped an armed robbery attempt after being followed to his home in Sherman Oaks, KABC-TV reported.
The incident happened around 3 a.m. Four suspects in a silver Jeep Cherokee followed Jenkins to his home on Vista Street before confronting him in a robbery attempt. They demanded that he and his passenger get out of the car. At least one suspect had a gun, as per KABC-TV.
Jenkins managed to flee in his vehicle but was chased by the would-be robbers who opened fire on his car. No one was injured.