HIGHLAND PARK (CBSDFW.COM) - Police have made arrests and are investigating a smash and grab burglary at a high-end retailer in the Highland Park Village Shopping Center.
The thieves reportedly smashed a vehicle into the Chanel Boutique, off Mockingbird Lane, just after 6 o'clock this morning.
According to investigators, the suspects involved crashed a minivan into the store and grabbed a number of handbags. An off-duty officer from Van Alstyne, working security for the shopping center, witnessed the crash. Police were alerted after an alarm went off at the store.
By 7:30 a.m. Department of Public Safety (DPS) troopers and officers with the Highland Park, University Park and Dallas Police Departments had surrounded a burgundy-colored minivan in a residential area. Chanel handbags could be seen scattered around the vehicle. According to Lt. Lance Koppa, a white minivan found abandoned in University Park is also being investigated.
Eventually six young men were seen being led away in handcuffs. At least four of them were found hiding in somebody's backyard. Police say seven people were arrested... five adults, two juveniles.
Koppa estimated that 50 purses were taken. So far, no word on the value of the stolen handbags, but most Chanel purses sell for thousands of dollars -- some for tens of thousands. That could put the estimated value of the stolen merchandise well over $200,000. Investigators are working with the store to determine what items were taken.
"This was a targeted effort to get the highest return on the biggest bang for their buck," said Koppa. "Fortunately for us, they got apprehended."
Canine police units and DPD's Air One helicopter also assisted in the search for suspects.
Here are the mug shots and names of the five adult suspects:
The seven suspects will be charged as follows: 1) Theft of Property, 1st Degree Felony due to dollar amount stolen; and 2) Criminal Mischief, a State Jail Felony. HPDPS investigators have inventoried the recovered stolen property: 1) Handbags – 45 recovered, each with a value between $2,000 and $15,000; and 2) one pair of womens shoes valued at $1,400. The stolen property was recovered from the two mini-vans, and some of the suspects were in possession of the stolen property. HPDPS investigators are working with Chanel staff to determine the total number and dollar amount of items stolen from the store.
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