The Washington Post

Increase in D.C. robberies prompts action from Guardian Angels

As police work to deal with an increase in robberies and thefts of electronic devices such as smartphones, D.C.’s Guardian Angels are hoping to help educate the public.

Guardian Angels in Adams Morgan in 2011. (Astrid Riecken/FOR THE WASHINGTON POST)

“We’re passing out these flyers that say ‘Don’t become a victim.’ They’re safety tips. Making people aware of what’s going on in the area,” John Ayala told WAMU’s Armando Trull. “Throughout the District of Columbia people are being robbed for their iPhones, iPods, and computers.”

This afternoon, the group was in Anacostia.

Police data show that about 40 percent of nearly 500 robberies reported so far this year involved electronic gadgets. D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said earlier this month that such crimes had “clobbered” her department, and wants wireless companies to allow more users to shut down their devices remotely.

Obviously, it’s hard to permanently safeguard yourself against theft or robbery, but here are some tips compiled by WJLA. (Among them: Don’t let your headphones distract you from what’s going on around you and travel in numbers.)

Watch the video below as a woman attempts to take an iPhone from an undercover Metro Transit Police officer before she is apprehended:

How do you safeguard your possessions?


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