Burglars tunnel their way into Apple store through bathroom wall

Brazen burglars tunnel their way into Seattle Apple store through bathroom wall of coffee supplies shop to steal more than 400 iPhones, iPads and Apple Watches worth $500,000

  • Thieves broke into a Seattle Apple store and stole $500,000 in gear on April 2
  • They cut a 24 by 18 hole, big enough to fit an adult, to break into the store 
  • The crime occurred after hours and police weren’t notified until the next day 

Brazen thieves tunneled their way into an Apple store through the bathroom wall of an adjoining coffee supplies store – making away with more than $500,000 worth of gear. 

Seattle police said the crime at the Alderwood Mall was ‘calculated’ and the thieves struck about 7pm on April 2 when the stores were closed. 

It’s unclear if the thieves were hiding out in the adjoining Seattle Coffee Gear restroom, or whether they initially broke in before cutting a hole into the Apple store. Photos of the scene showed a hole large enough to fit an adult in between a toilet and sink.

The break-in wasn’t reported until the following morning when Apple employees noticed several iPhones missing from the shelves. 

‘Approximately 436 iPhones in total were taken out of the back,’ LPD Communications Manager Maren McKay said. ‘In total about $500,000 worth of merchandise was stolen and that’s iPhones, iPads, Apple watches.’ 

Thieves broke into a Seattle Apple store and stole $500,000 in gear on April 2. The burglars managed to enter the tech store by digging a hole through an adjacent store’s wall

The hole leading into the tech shop appeared to be covered up after the incident occurred 

Eric Marks, Seattle Coffee Gear Regional Manager, said the thieves managed to break into his shop by prying open its locked front doors. 

‘Our front door was locked. They pried our front door open,’ Marks told local outlet KOMO. ‘[The hole was a] 24 by 18 hole cut in the wall into what appears to be the back room of the Apple store.

‘I’m surprised we were the conduit for them to get to the Apple store,’ he added. 

Lynwood police said the crime was well-thought out based on the mall’s surveillance image, which has not yet been released. The thieves were wearing masks and no fingerprints were left at the scene.

Lynwood police and Apple weren’t immediately available for comment.

This map of the Alderwood Mall shows the Apple store is directly next door to the Seattle Coffee Gear store

It’s unclear if the thieves were hiding out in the mall when they started their game plan inside the Seattle Coffee Gear shop (Pictured)

Retail theft in the US has grown to be one of the largest epidemics in the past few years.

The multi-billion issue has led to several well-known chain stores sounding the alarm for help, including Best Buy, Lowe’s, Walmart, CVS and other drug stores, CNBC reported.  

Doug McMillon, Walmart CEO, previously warned against the historic hike in the crimes that aren’t fixable through advanced security systems. 

‘If that’s not corrected over time, prices will be higher, and/or stores will close,’ McMillon told the news outlet. 

McMillon suggested that staffed police departments can fix the problem. 

Last year, the National Retail Federation released a study that claimed the amount of goods shoplifted was about a $35 billion loss. The study was conducted by select anonymous retailers. 

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