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Nearly a dozen people loot high-end clothing store in Hancock Park

$100,000 worth of merchandise stolen from Hancock Park clothing store
$100,000 worth of merchandise stolen from Hancock Park clothing store 02:38

The recent rash of smash-and-grab robberies continued Tuesday as a group of 11 young men raided and pillaged a high-end clothing store in Hancock Park. 

According to the Los Angeles Police Department, the 11 young men dawning ski masks ran inside the Ksubi store right before closing time at about 7 p.m. Detectives said the group ran past security guards and took off with an estimated $100,000 in stolen goods. 

A local business owner said the hectic incident lasted less than a minute.

"They looked at me. I closed the door because I got scared," said the business owner, who did not want to share his name. "Then, about 20 seconds later they were running the other way with hands full of clothes and hangers."

Officers arrested two juveniles connected to the robbery but the search for the others continues. This is the second time this year the retailer has been ravaged. In January, another group of thieves used a car to plow through the front of the building and pocket everything they could. 

The robbery marks the fifth smash-and-grab to happen in the Los Angeles area in two weeks. On Saturday, 30 thieves armed with bear spray and wearing masks stormed a Nordstrom store in the Westfield Topanga shopping center, taking $300,000 worth of merchandise. On Sunday another group of thieves, many of whom appeared to be juveniles, ripped through a Nike store in East L.A. 

Earlier this month, a mob ransacked a store at the Saint Laurent store at Glendale's Americana at Brand shopping center. Former mayoral candidate Rick Caruso owns the property and claimed that the sophisticated security systems as well as armed guards could not stop the dozens of people from ransacking the store. Caruso added that these types of robberies could bankrupt a small business.

"We've got to demand that our elected officials get some courage, do the right thing, change the right laws that need to be changed and they need to enforce the laws," he said. "These people, they need to be held accountable."

On Monday, L.A. County District Attorney George Gascón denounced these robberies calling them organized crime and he vowed to prosecute the criminals to the fullest extent of the law. These assurances did not do much for many local business owners scared that their store may be next.

"You never know when it is going to happen to you," one owner said. 

The group that pillaged Ksubi drove off in at least two cars: a silver Lexus and a tan BMW. Detectives are looking for any connection between the recent smash-and-grabs.

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