$105,000 taken in Apple Store heist

The Apple Store at Stanford. Apple photo.

Correction: The heist happened on Wednesday (Sept. 18) night. This morning’s print edition of the Post gave the wrong date. This version has been corrected.

Daily Post Staff Writer

Nine men stole over $105,000 worth of merchandise from the Stanford Shopping Center Apple Store in a grab-and-run heist, Palo Alto police said.

The suspects, who were all described as being in their early 20s, ran into the store at 8:12 p.m. on Wednesday, picked up all the items they could carry and ran outside. Two getaway cars, a Volkswagen SUV and a Nissan Altima, were waiting for the men. They drove east on Sand Hill Road and disappeared.

The thieves got away with 22 iPads, 10 MacBooks, 71 iPhones and 23 Apple Pencils, according to police Sgt. Craig Lee.

One witness said some of the men were wearing masks, said Lee. They did not brandish weapons.

Wednesday’s robbery is the latest in a series of Apple Store burglaries in the Bay Area. Apple stores in Burlingame, Palo Alto, Santa Rosa, Emeryville, Hillsdale and Walnut Creek have been targeted in similar grab-and-go heists in the past two months.

On Aug. 29, seven young men snatched phones, tablets, and laptops from display tables at the Burlingame Apple Store, Channel 2 reported. The crew broke the cables attached to the devices and ran out of the store with their arms full of stolen electronics. More than $50,000 was taken.

On Aug. 31, a four-member crew of thieves hit Palo Alto’s Apple Store on University Avenue, grabbing $40,000 in merchandise while bystanders watched or shot video of the scene with their iPhones.

The next day, Sept. 1, a crew of four males in hoodies hit the Burlingame Apple Store, taking $50,000 in laptops and phones.

On Sept. 5, three masked men entered an Apple store inside the Hillsdale Shopping Center in San Mateo and made off with about 40 items, San Mateo police said.

Lee said he does not know if the incidents are related. He declined to answer questions about the open investigation into the robbery.

He said this style of crime has been common over the past few years.

Seventeen people were arrested and charged by the state Department of Justice for a $1 million robbery scheme targeting Apple stores across the state in 2018. Stores in Oakland and San Luis Obispo were hit in those robberies, along with locations in Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara and Sonoma counties.



  1. Why aren’t apple store employees armed and trained to use guns? If word got out that all apple employees are armed, then no more apple stores would be robbed. You don’t have to be a genius to know that more guns equal less crime.

    • Do the math Mr. President. 20 or so employees on the sales floor shooting at thieves in front of large glass storefront with 75 customers and God knows how many people in front of the store equals many deaths by “friendly fire”.

    • You dont think things through. Those “geniuses” cant fix your ipad, you want them shooting at people. Average accuracy during a confrontation is around 10%, the rest of the ammunition will go through thin mall walls and bystanders. You sir are an idiot that I hope does not own a gun

  2. Knowing that squads of criminal punks are going to steal tech devices from apple stores: put tracking devices in the damn iJunk. The cops could catch these crooks, it seems they dont want to.

    • Yes, but then they have to do it for their customers devices, and they would lose the revenue they make on insurance policies to guard against theft.

  3. Imagine your kids witnessing a smash and go. Seems like Apple store is off my list, next they will rob the customers inside. While Apple just stand by

  4. The commenter against me having guns is a gun nut who wants the government to have a monopoly on guns. I’m not talking about firing guns off in apple store. I’m talking about criminals not even thinking about shoplifting from an apple store because of armed employees. Many crimes have been prevented just by flashing a heater or the perp knowing that a person can not be victimized because they are able to defend themselves. Those gangs stealing expensive electronics from Apple stores are not using guns to rob. They are shop lifting! Armed robbery and home invasions is a major felony. Shoplifting and commercial burglary is not. Thieves are not using guns to rob Apple stores. I’m not talking about Armed robbers vs Armed employees, that could lead to collateral damage. I am against that.

  5. Add up all the losses here and they amount to less than what Apple earns globally in five minutes.

    Now consider the amount of money a large, very profitable corporation like Apple could lose if an armed guard ends up shooting a customer during one of these robberies.

  6. Standby doing nothing against robbery, theft, is encouraging criminal. Where is the spirit of Good Samaritan nowadays? Apple leads a bad example.

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