Southern California

Traveling Bay Area Burglary Crews Target Tourists in Hollywood

Detectives who busted another burglary crew from the Bay Area targeting tourists at Southern California attractions say they're seeing a trend.

As one detective put it, "The word is out among known Bay Area criminals."

Police say the burglary crews drive down to Hollywood and target Southern California tourists in Hollywood. 

"It's a little scary," Nathan Jorgensen, a visitor from Iowa, said. "One extra thing to plan for when you're going on vacation, walking down Hollywood Boulevard, looking at stars--where am I keeping my belongings?"

The short police pursuit of four thieves inside a silver Toyota Pathfinder that was rented in the Bay Area ended in Beverly Hills Wednesday morning. In the SUV, investigators found more than $1,000 in cash, high-end jewelry and a gun.

Wednesday's pursuit started after burglars targeted a Hollywood I-HOP parking lot, which was the same parking lot where another group of thieves--also from the San Francisco Bay Area--broke into several cars last month, police said.

That burglary ring led police on a dangerous high-speed chase that ended at the Sherman Oaks Galleria.

While several members of that crew were arrested, police believe they now have several more burglars from Northern California making trips to Hollywood with the intention to target tourists in Hollywood.

These crews commit 50 burglaries on an average trip to town, police estimated. While three suspected burglars were caught related to the Wednesday morning burglary, police say one of the burglars from the chase is still at large.

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