Dozens Or Hundreds Of Apple Devices Burgled From Chicago Best Buy

How many Apple gadgets did thieves remove from a Chicago Best Buy this past weekend? Police gave the media a modest estimate of only $42,000 worth of iPads, MacBooks, and GPS devices. However, an unnamed source whispered to CBS Chicago that the figure could be closer to $200,000, with the haul including a few hundred iPads.

According to police, the nine-man crew entered by ramming their van into a garage door at the rear entrance. They knew the store well enough to remove take stock from an inventory storage area just inside, which makes detectives suspect that one or more former employees could be involved.

Surveillance footage from the store is not yet available to the media or to the public.


Best Buy Burglars Take Big Bite Of Apple Inventory [CBS Chicago]

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  1. MutantMonkey says:

    The jokes on them, it was just a bunch of boxes filled with notepads.

  2. Here to ruin your groove says:

    Once these Apple devices are registered online, won’t they be flagged as stolen merchandise through the proof of purchase?

    • Blueskylaw says:

      If you sell it for cash at a flea market it won’t matter to you.

    • comatose says:

      You would think they would do this, but typically they don’t give a rat’s. They may do something in this case because of the large volume of theft involved, however they don’t normally. There’s tons of stolen iPhone stories where the end user using find my iPhone or other means have a general idea of the location of the stolen devices, and Apple and authorities can’t be bothered.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      So you are saying I should just use free wi-fi and not register for plan?

      • MaxH42 thinks RecordStoreToughGuy got a raw deal says:

        Even if you do that, most people will download apps rather than just use the devices as browsers, at which point Apple should be able to determine the device ID. Of course, whether Apple can be compelled to cooperate in the investigation or not is another issue entirely. And, as BlueSky points out, if the thieves are as good at getting rid of the devices as they were at acquiring them, that kind of trace would just dead end at someone who purchased the device “off the back of a truck” and doesn’t have any further information about where they came from or who was involved.

  3. FatLynn says:

    So, what you’re saying is…I should be able to get an iPad on the cheap this week?

    • thomwithanh says:

      Just be careful when buying out of the back of somebody’s car… it might just be a piece of wood covered in sharpie marks.

    • Gman says:

      Sure your post is sarcastic, but interesting question.

      IAMNAL but wont this just be purchasing stolen merchandise and you easily have the chance of your money going to waste when they track down the device and confiscate it as stolen property?

      • FatLynn says:

        Yes, absolutely. I imagine that the first time you connect to the internet, you are more or less alerting the authorities.

  4. Blueskylaw says:

    The corrected headline reads:

    Several Apple gadgets, worth hundreds of thousands of dollars were recently stolen from a Chicago Best Buy: Apple stock plunges 5% in aftermarket trading.

  5. cosmic.charlie says:

    The economy must be getting really bad if people in Bucktown can’t afford to buy Apple products.

    • Mrs. w/1 child says:

      I’m pretty sure the team that stole the products doesn’t live in Bucktown. One or more of them just had to work for minimum wage in Bucktown…*wry grin*

  6. Foot_Note says:

    inside job?

  7. consumed says:

    I’m kinda surprised they bashed in the install bay door, there are supposed to be a pair of raisable concrete pylons right inside the garage door that prevent anything from coming in, anytime the store is closed.

    • full.tang.halo says:

      I sell Roll-Up doors like the one pictured and they are made of a 26-24ga steel panel. A claw hammer and a set of electric shears that can be attached to a battery powered drill or a portable angle grinder, and you can be in one of these in under 5 minutes.

      Locks are for honest people, that door may look impressive, but much like the TSA, it’s only for looks.

    • There's room to move as a fry cook says:

      No posts in the video.

  8. winstonthorne says:

    The striking part of this article for me is that someone was actually able to go to Best Buy and get what they wanted without any issues.

    • fuzzby says:

      I might resort to what these guys did just to avoid being hassled for extra warranty…

  9. TrustAvidity says:

    “…a modest estimate of only $42,000 worth of iPads, MacBooks, and GPS devices.”

    So one of each?

    I kid, I kid.

  10. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    “…police couldn’t make out the licence plate, couldn’t believe how poor the [video] quality was, couldn’t believe an electronics store didn’t have better electronics..”

    • deathbecomesme says:

      Geek squat must have set it up. Hope they paid for the blacktie warranty on that door

  11. crispyduck13 says:

    Well at least they didn’t pee on them.

  12. Geekybiker says:

    They’re just trying to replace the ones their kid peed on.

  13. Latentius says:

    I think I might faint! A Best Buy story on Consumerist where they didn’t immediately and irrationally blame the company for whatever may or may not have even happened!

    As for the content itself, I wouldn’t be too suspicious. After all, it IS a delivery area for new merchandise…kinda where any logical person would expect new gadgets to be located.

    • Invader Zim says:

      I blame the OP. For not having better security and not knowing how many apple products they have.

      -devils advocate

  14. IowaCowboy says:

    Wonder if they disabled the burglar alarm or if the alarm went off. Sounds like an inside job to me as the Best Buy where I live (and shop at quite frequently) has their Apple gadgets in locked metal cages.

    If the alarm did not go off, it could be one of two scenarios:

    1. Inside job where the thieves had the disarm codes
    2. Disabled the alarm by cutting the phone line or tampering with the alarm system itself.

  15. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    It took 1/2 hour for the police to find the manager, he wasn’t co-operative, said the stolen merchandise wasn’t in stock, asked for a receipt, and told them there was no point complaining to head office because they would back him up.

  16. Emperor Norton I says:

    I go past this Best Buy on the train all the time & you can see the loading dock from the train.
    But there aren’t any trains from 1AM to 5:15AM weekdays & only every three hours on Sundays.
    There’s a couple of local freights during the night, but they won’t see anything.

  17. LanMan04 says:

    What the hell is “take stock”?

  18. shepd says:

    Thank you for using the correct past tense of “burgle”. No, seriously, thank you. It means I don’t have to bust out “antiburglarizationists” to describe the cops.

  19. Invader Zim says:

    Nice layaway program

  20. gman863 says:

    I own a PC sales and repair shop in Houston. At least once a month, someone comes in and offers me Homeboy Shopping Network deals on “overstock” deals of new, unopened BBY items, such as $800 notebook PCs for $150.

    Needless to say, I pass on the deal then bum rush them out of the store. If they’ll steal from BBY, I don’t want them casing my store for their next score.

    • Overheal says:

      Actually you should be filming them, or be getting really coy about it and getting their contact information. Then refer the information to the police.

      • gman863 says:

        At the risk of sounding crass, lousy security on Best Buy’s part does not constitute an emergency on my part.

        I have enough things to worry about without adding a pissed-off thief busting a cap in my ass in the parking lot when I leave at night.

  21. WylieMalingsia says:

    That BestBuy is in an industrial area, with no houses, and no other stores near by. Even if the alarm went off, it takes awhile for the security monitoring company to call the Police, and for the Police to get there.
    I’m not surprised they got away with a lot of stuff.

  22. wellfleet says:

    100% inside job

    - Employees know how absolutely crappy the video camera footage is, and know where the dead spots are

    - Employees or former employees know where the Apple cages are, which door they’re closest to, and what the nearby products are

    - Employees know how long it takes for the alarm to actually trip and how long before the security company and managers are alerted

    • gman863 says:

      Many high ticket items are placed in portable wheeled cages when they’re offloaded from the truck.

      If they’re left in the portable wheeled cage overnight (which often happens), a thief can wheel the cart directly to the loading dock and into a truck. When talking about iPads or higher end notebook PCs, a single wheeled cage can easily hold $8K – $10K of stock.

    • Latentius says:

      Your first and third points make assumptions about the behavior of the criminals that there’s simply no evidence for at this time. There’s no mention of the burglars avoiding blind spots–in fact, even with the crappy cameras, their vehicle was still easily identified.

      As for time, I imagine any burglar would try to get in and out as fast as possible, and lacking that, it wouldn’t take much special knowledge to get a rough idea of how much time you had before police might show up.

      And for your second point, that’s just silly. ANYONE can see where they keep things like iPads. It’s really simple. Just go in and wait for someone to buy one (it happens pretty frequently, so that wouldn’t be a long wait), and then watch the employee go to the security cage and grab one.

      It could still completely be an employee, of course, but there’s no significant reason to believe that based on the article and video.

      • wellfleet says:

        The burglars came right after a big Apple delivery. Bet you didn’t know that. Also, four of the last four major Best Buy heists involved current employees or recently fired employees. Chew on that.

  23. syxx says:

    Bet someone loses their job for this.. or probably all the employees. No wait that’s going to happen anyway.