BART Cops Release Video of Robber in Action

Categories: Crime

BART passenger
There's always a Grinch -- or two -- you gotta worry about around the holidays. It's especially true if you are a trusting person who likes to ride public transit.

However, BART police are hopping to teach you a lesson about being too oblivious with this three-part video of thief who snatched a cellphone from a passenger earlier this week at 12th Street station.

Watch this Dec. 11 video, which clearly shows a thief grabbing a cellphone from an unsuspecting rider, then hauling ass up the escalator and jumping the fare gates to escape.

Dispatchers put out a systemwide alert to BART PD; less than an hour later, officers arrested 20-year-old Trevel Thomas at the Powell Street Station, according to BART police.

According to BART, Thomas confessed to the crime. He was booked in jail and has since been charged with robbery.

"Smartphone thefts are on the rise nationwide, so we are hoping this video will serve as a clear reminder for riders to remain alert and aware of your belongings and surroundings," said Era Jenkins, spokeswoman for BART Police. "We encourage passengers to hold their belongings close to their bodies and make eye contact with those nearby. Be extra cautious when standing near quick escape routes like escalators, stairs and train doors."

Now for some common-sense transit tips:

  • Keep wallets and electronics secure -- use purses or bags with zippered compartments

  • Don't carry your wallets or other valuables in your back pockets

  • Be wary of someone trying distract you, such as dropping coins or bumping into you -- some pickpockets work in teams

  • Don't leave anything -- from small change to shopping bags -- in your vehicle, because thieves will steal whatever they can see.

If you do see crazy stuff happening, (other than the regular BART ride) report suspicious activity to BART Police at (510) 464-7000.

My Voice Nation Help

The best way to reduce phone theft is to make manufacturers blacklist stolen phones.

They have been dragging their feet on this for ages because they love phone theft.  It means another phone purchase from the victim and an probable new customer once the thief resells it.

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