The thieves were slick, Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Lt. Brian Sanders said Wednesday.
They’d meander into a local college campus building or the lobby of a Charlotte apartment complex, hotel or other business and nonchalantly snatch their prey, an unattended Apple iPad, iPhone, tablet or desktop.
Since December 2013, the group stole about $60,000 in electronics, quickly selling them online, Sanders told a news conference at CMPD headquarters. Police called the news conference to announce the arrests of three men in 25 thefts.
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In most cases, Sanders said, one, two or three men entered a business, school or the common area of an apartment building or hotel and simply took items and left.
None of the thieves ever showed a weapon, he said.
Among the cases, a $2,000 iMac desktop computer was stolen from UNC Charlotte’s center city campus on Jan. 6, according to a police report.
On Jan. 19, five products valued at a combined $5,200 were taken from Queens University of Charlotte, another report shows.
Related cases happened at colleges elsewhere in the state, including at UNC Chapel Hill, Sanders said.
Police arrested Kwasi Brown, 23, of Matthews; Tyrone Smith, 22, of Charlotte; and Javis Dozier, 22, of Charlotte in the cases. All were charged with felony larceny, felony breaking and entering, and damage to property. Smith and Brown also were charged with resisting a public officer.
Anyone with information about the cases is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.