‘Flash Robs’ Fuel Retailer Fear of Holiday Season

Group theft—instigated, in part, through social media—has stores on guard

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Upscale retailers along Chicago’s Michigan Avenue are accustomed to seeing groups of teens hanging around outside their stores. But that scene took a sinister turn this past spring when gangs of adolescents descended on The North Face, Filene’s Basement, and Express—yelling to distract security, scooping up thousands of dollars worth of goods, then dashing out the doors.

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