Police work to find group of Arlington shoplifters

Several stores frequented mostly by women are the targets of a group of robbers.

In one case, employees who tried to stop the thieves were pepper sprayed.

"We had two stores hit on Thursday, two stores on Friday,” said Lt. Christopher Cook with the Arlington Police Department.

Arlington police want people to watch surveillance video from last Thursday from the Ulta store in the Arlington Highlands shopping plaza.

A black woman holding bags stops short before leaving the store.

She is seen reaching into her bag and grabbing pepper spray. Police say her bags are filled with things she didn't pay for.

When she leaves, the clerks try to stop her.

"The female actually produced some pepper spray, sprayed initially at one employee and then as she went outside, another tried to grab the product and she sprayed that employee as well,” said Lt. Christopher Cook with the Arlington Police Department.  

Detectives say the same three or four women hit a Bath & Body Works in Lincoln Square earlier in the day, but when employees confronted them, they dropped the stolen merchandise and took off.

The next day, Friday, investigators say the band of thieves hit a Children's Place store in Lincoln Square, threatened to use pepper spray on the employees there and made off with clothes.

Then later that night, cameras at the Ulta in Lincoln Square caught the suspects. Detectives say they were pulling things off the shelves and putting them in bags.

In one video, they simply walk out with the stolen merchandise.

Police believe the thefts are part of a ring. They call the thieves brazen and they hope someone will recognize who they are.

Anyone with information on the suspects is asked to contact Det. John Henry at (817) 459-5312 or Det. Andrew Cornwell at (817) 459-5336. Tips can also be submitted via Crime Stoppers at 817-469-8477 or online at www.469tips.com.

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