An optometrist office one block from the Clarendon Metro station was the latest apparent victim of a band of eyeglass bandits.
The robbery happened last night shortly after 6 p.m. at Visual Health (3012 Wilson Blvd). Police say a group of three suspects entered the store, grabbed handfuls of glasses, and ran to a getaway vehicle that then sped off.
From an Arlington County Police Department crime report today:
GRAND LARCENY (significant), 2022-02160206, 3000 block of Wilson Boulevard. At approximately 6:13 p.m. on February 16, police were dispatched to the report of a robbery by force. Upon arrival, officers determined the incident was a grand larceny. The investigation determined that Suspect One entered into the business and began grabbing eyeglasses. A short time later, Suspects Two and Three entered into the business and also began grabbing eyeglasses. All three suspects then ran out of the business with the stolen merchandise and entered into a vehicle before fleeing the area. The three suspects are described as Black males, approximately 5’8″ – 5’10”. Suspect One was wearing all black clothing and a black ski mask. There is no clothing description for Suspects Two and Three. The suspect vehicle is described as a black sedan. The investigation is ongoing.
The suspect descriptions and modus operandi are similar to a group implicated in a series of smash-and-grab eyeglass heists around the region over the past month or so.
Among the half-dozen or more previous incidents was a $60,000 eyeglass theft from Arlington’s EyeSee Optique on Columbia Pike on Jan. 11; another eyeglass smash-and-grab at Bauer’s Optical, near Fairlington in Alexandria, on Jan. 20; and a Feb. 1 smash-and-grab at Village Eye Center in McLean.
“Based on the similar circumstances of the incidents, the Arlington cases are being investigated as a series,” ACPD spokeswoman Ashley Savage tells ARLnow. “The investigation into these incidents is ongoing and Arlington detectives continue to collaborate with our regional law enforcement partners to identify crime trends in the region and apprehend suspects involved.”
The thieves are believed to be targeting eyeglasses due to their relatively small size and high resale value.
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