As surveillance video shows, it wasn't the Labor Day that cell phone store owner Arthur Kazmi expected.
He said, "Basically four females came, African American, they held an employee at gunpoint. They robbed us of 10 different devices and deposits for the last couple of days."
The video shows one of the suspects holding a gun to an employee's head. It was Monday afternoon around 4pm, and the suspect forced the employee to open and empty the safe. Conroe police say the cell phones will likely turn up on eBay, Craigslist or some other social media site.
"They may even post on their Facebook page, 'Hey, I got phones for sale,'" explained Sgt. Dorcy Riddle with the Conroe Police Department. "And whoever follows on their Facebook or Twitter knows they sell phones."
Investigators are just beginning to investigate what's seen on the video, but cell phone robberies seem to be increasing in the area. Two other stores around Conroe were also recently robbed. Though suspects were caught in one of the robberies, investigators don't believe the incidents are related, just simply a way for criminals to make a quick buck.
"The smart phones, the tablets and things like that, because of the high resale value for them, right now it's just a hot commodity item," Sgt. Riddle said.
As for Kazmi, the cell phone robbery trend is getting frustrating. One of his west Houston stores was hit recently and this brazen robbery only made things worse. Still, he says he won't let the bad guys scare him out of business.
He said, "You can't let little stuff like that hinder you away from your target. Hopefully this will be the last of it."
Investigators want to remind the public to keep in mind that phones for sale on Craigslist or similar sites could be stolen.
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