Richmond police warn of cell phone snatching in downtown - NBC12.com - Richmond, VA News

Richmond police warn of cell phone snatching in downtown

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Richmond police are sending out a crime alert. Cell phone snatching is on the rise in downtown.

The bold bandits are actually snatching the phones right of your hand.

"Let them try it," said Russell Duerr who spends a lot of time on his phone downtown. "Seeing if I've got emails. Talking to old girlfriends on the phone. This thing is a part of me. No one is taking this thing."

6 phones have been snatched in the last 30 days. 36 percent of the robberies in downtown this year have been cell phone grabs.

"We just ask people while they are out to just be aware of that," said Lt. Donald Davenport. "Be aware that they are carrying an electronic device that is valuable."

Lt. Davenport says the majority of robberies happen between 8 p.m. and midnight.

"We've got bike patrols," said Lt. Davenport. "We've got foot patrols, and we have two person directed patrols that we are putting there specifically during those times."

Russell has a plan of his own.

"I will tackle them to the ground and make a citizens arrest," said Russell.

This is being called a nationwide trend. New York has actually set up a cell phone task force.

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