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Crime blotter: Apple Stores hit with forklift, serial thefts, and slight-of-hand cash robbery.

The Apple Store in Downtown Los Angeles

In the latest Apple Crime Blotter, a viral plane incident began with an AirPods dispute, a SIM swapper pleads guilty, and the case of an AirPod theft from a school wraps up four years later.

The latest in an occasional AppleInsider series, looking at the latest news in Apple-related crime.

Man crashed forklift into Apple Store in downtown Los Angeles

A police pursuit in Los Angeles of a man driving a stolen forklift ended in the man crashing the forklift into that city's downtown Apple Store, in the Tower Theatre, on August 1.

According to The Los Angeles Times, after the man crashed the forklift into the store, he fled on foot but was arrested that night.

A Twitter/X user filmed part of the incident:

Two men accused of stealing over $10,000 in Apple Store items in eight different thefts

Two men are wanted for multiple thefts totaling $10,070 in products from the Apple Store in King of Prussia Mall, outside Philadelphia. The thefts, per 6 ABC, took place in eight different visits between September 2022 and June 2023.

The targeted items included "headphones, Apple Magic Mouses, keyboards, trackpads, and Air Tags," the report said.

Spate of Apple Store thefts in South Florida

Police in South Florida say that thieves have stolen from multiple Apple Store locations in the region, including Fort Lauderdale, Aventura Mall, and Miami's Brickell neighborhood.

According to Local 10 in Miami, the thieves are accused of taking five iPhones and three Apple Pencils from the Brickell City Center location. At the Galleria Mall incident in Fort Lauderdale, the thieves are accused of using a prepaid card that didn't go through, at which point they "grabbed the Apple employee's tablet and changed the amount."

Man accused of Minnesota Apple Store cash theft has Romanian mob ties, prosecutors say

A New York man with "ties to a Romanian organized crime group" has been arrested for using "sleight of hand" to steal from an Apple Store in suburban Minneapolis.

WCCO reports the theft took place at the Apple Store at Southdale Center in Edina. The 25-year-old man, authorities say, took out $3,600 in cash to pay for a MacBook and AirPods.

But while talking to the employee, the man allegedly grabbed $1,900 from the cash pile.

In such scams, the thieves often return the items for additional cash, the report said.

Viral video of woman on a plane began with an accusation of AirPods theft

In early July, a video went viral of a woman on an airplane screaming that a man at the back of the plane was "not real." Now, the backstory of the incident has emerged, and it began with an argument about AirPods.

According to The New York Post, the woman has been identified as a 38-year-old marketing executive who lives in the Dallas area. The incident, per the newspaper, began when the woman got into an argument with her relatives, who she accused of stealing her AirPods.

The woman was issued a warrant for criminal trespass but has not been charged with any crime.

SIM Swapper, accusing of imitating Apple support, pleads guilty

A Los Angeles man accused of scamming victims by "SIM swapping" has agreed to plead guilty to three felony charges, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Central District of California announced.

The man, who pled guilty to one count of unauthorized access to a protected computer to obtain information, one count of wire fraud, and one count of accessing a computer to defraud and obtain value, was accused of engaging in plentiful scams that defrauded hundreds of victims.

These included everything from impersonating other people, including Apple tech support, while also gaining access to other people's intimate photos and blackmailing them. He was also accused of gaining access to other people's iCloud accounts, in order to steal "NFTs, cryptocurrency, and other valuable digital property."

After four years, a woman accused of stealing AirPods wins in court

Back in 2019, a then-high school student in Illinois named Amara Harris was accused by her school of stealing AirPods belonging to a classmate and later ticketed. According to ProPublica, the case was finally adjudicated in the courts this week, with a jury concluding that the city of Naperville did not prove she took the items and found her not liable.

Harris had long maintained that she picked up the wrong AirPods by mistake, as opposed to purposely stealing them. It was officially a municipal ticket case and not a criminal trial.

"I feel vindicated, a weight lifted off my shoulder, and I can finish out my school year with nothing held over my head," said Harris, who is about to begin her senior year of college.

TikTok user says AirPods Max were stolen from her head in New York

A TikTok user claimed that a pair of AirPods Max headphones were stolen off her head by someone on a moped as she walked in New York City. According to user "graceisafreund," the moped user plucked the headphones right off her head.


The city of unlimited possibilities

original sound - GraceIsAFreund

iPhone stolen from car near Malibu Pier

A surfer who had parked their car and gone surfing near Malibu Pier locked their keys in a lifeguard tower, only to find the keys missing and numerous items stolen from their car. The Malibu Times reports the stolen items included an iPhone, passport, wallet, and about $1,250 in cash.

iPhones stolen from festival in Ghana

The Aboakyer Festival in the Central Region of Ghana was plagued this May by a rash of iPhone thefts. According to Ghana Fuo, thieves stole numerous items from the bags and purses of attendees. One "fetish priestess" had her iPhone, money, and purse stolen during the event.

"Whoever took it, they should bring it; otherwise, they should remember that this is a festival, and the phone they have stolen, they will take it away and go and die," the woman told the press.