You could be forgiven for assuming the latest brazen, caught-on-camera theft took place in California, where lenient laws have emboldened many crooks.
No, this time it happened — of all places — in Oxford, Connecticut.
Cellphone video recorded four masked individuals loading shopping carts full of unpaid-for merchandise from the Market 32 store into a pair of SUVs just after 6:30 a.m. Tuesday,WFSB-TV reported.
The clip shows the quartet silently and frantically tossing items into their waiting vehicles as onlookers just watch and record video.
At least two of the witnesses likely were store employees, as one is heard on video yelling to another to not interfere: "Don't! You're gonna get fired! That's why prices go up because of these [bleeped word]. Can't get a job like the rest us.”
And the caper continued with no resistance as the crooks soon entered their SUVs and sped off.
The suspects got away well before the arrival of police, who said they were notified about the theft a full 10 minutes after it took place, WFSB reported, adding that store manager wasn't commenting.
"Had 911 been contacted in a timely manner, police personnel would have been able to attempt to intercept those involved," police said in a press release, according to the station. "We would like to remind everyone to stay vigilant and not to engage with people like this when a crime is occurring."
Well-planned 'organized' heist
State police told WTIC-TV the four individuals in question are suspected of stealing $1,600 in goods such as detergent and paper towels, adding that a larceny of that dollar amount is considered a misdemeanor.
"Information sharing has developed leads that they are most likely going to be trying to sell those items on social media as well as in their communities that they live in," Resident Trooper Sgt. John Acampora with the state police told WTIC.
More from the station:Police said at least two of the suspects have committed other crimes of this kind across Connecticut and outside of the state. Police believe the two vehicles used were stolen.
Police said they've identified two of the suspects but can't release their identities with the investigation ongoing.
"They were organized, they knew what they were doing, they had no plates on the car," George Temple, Oxford's first selectman, added to WTIC.
"It's very unusual that anything like that happened here, and I guess while it's good that it was caught on video so they might be able to get the guys, no one was doing anything about it,“" Vinny Brophy from Beacon Falls told WTIC. "They just kind of let it happen.”
Mark Krassner of Oxford noted to WFSB that it”s "terrible" that "people have to resort to this, but I think you're gonna see more and more of this, you know, with the price of food going up, everything going up.”