According to authorities, there have been numerous reports of thieves targeting victims engaged in routine activities such as running errands, walking in their neighborhoods, and biking.
The Newport Beach police are alerting residents and visitors to a concerning uptick in jewelry thefts through a new distraction scheme
Even parking lots have not been spared from these thefts, with similar incidents being reported. Sgt. Steven Oberon of the Newport Beach Police Department emphasized that the thefts have been particularly prevalent in the Newport Coast and San Joaquin Hills Road areas, as well as the Crystal Cove shopping centers. However, he warned that this trend seems to be spreading countywide, becoming a matter of increasing concern for law enforcement.
In these incidents, suspects approach unsuspecting victims under the pretense of seeking assistance or directions. They might even offer a piece of jewelry as a token of appreciation, hug the victim, or use other tactics to distract them. In the process, the cunning thieves deftly remove jewelry and watches from the victim’s neck, wrists, or hands, making a swift getaway before the victim realizes the theft has occurred.
Newport Beach police officials advise both residents and visitors to remain vigilant at all times
Newport Beach police recommend being attentive to their surroundings, limiting distractions when possible, and being cautious when strangers attempt to invade their personal space. Furthermore, Newport Beach police urge people to trust their instincts and stay vigilant about their personal belongings.
The Newport Beach police are actively investigating these cases and urging the public to report any suspicious activity immediately. By raising awareness and promoting proactive measures, Newport Beach police hope to thwart the thieves’ efforts and keep the community safe from this new form of jewelry theft.