BEVERLY HILLS (CBSLA) —Beverly Hills has hired two private security companies to bolster patrols after robberies of high-end stores become a new viral trend.
"Our city is taking it serious, we're putting the money into it," said Todd Johnson, president and CEO of Beverly Hills Chamber of Commerce.
Late Saturday night, robbers attempted to break into the Louis Vuitton and Saks Fifth Ave. stores off of Rodeo Drive, by smashing the windows with sledgehammers but failed to get into the store because of the thick protective glass. The window of Louis Vuitton has since been repaired.
The trend of smash and grab robberies of high-end retail stores has become a new trend around the state. Over the weekend, police say 80 people ransacked a Walnut Creek Nordstrom while others have robbed Fendi, Burberry and YSL stores in San Francisco. According to the National Retail Federation, there has been a 57% increase in organized retail crime since last year.
"It frustrates me that people work so hard for their money and people just have no appreciation or no morals for anything these days," said tourist Ashley Dearcos.
As a result of the recent rash of attempted robberies, police have increased patrols, having officers work 12 hours shifts and are hoping to utilize the over 2000 security cameras watching over the city. The private security teams hired by the city, totaling about 80 armed guards, have increased patrols in the area. The private security companies have been supplementing the police force since the summer of 2020.
"We're confident we'll continue to protect as much as we can and be ready for it best we can," said Johnson.
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