Police in York region are warning the public about a rash of robberies in which victims were “swarmed by a large group of young people.”
Police say that several similar incidents involving street-level robberies at plazas and on sidewalks in the area of Jane Street and Norwood Avenue were reported on June 11 and June 18.
In one of the incidents on June 11, police say a male victim was exiting a restaurant with some takeout when he was “aggressively accosted by a group of youth demanding alcohol, cigarettes and his food.
Police say that the victim placed the food in the back seat of his car, at which point the “crowd began kicking and hitting the vehicle,” causing extensive damage.
“One teen opened the rear door and stole the victim’s food. The victim attempted to get his food back, however, was chased, swarmed, attacked and had his wallet stolen,” a press release issued on Friday afternoon states.
Police say that a 16-year-old suspect has been arrested in connection with the June 11 robbery and charged with mischief and causing a disturbance.
However, other suspects in that and other robberies remain outstanding.
Police are urging any additional victims of swarming-type robberies to come forward and speak with investigators.
“Officers will remain active and aggressive in these areas to combat this issue,” the press release notes. “Investigators continue to work with community members and business owners in the area to gather video surveillance, report incidents and apprehend those responsible for these offences.”