PALM BEACH — More than a dozen one-of-a-kind Hermes handbags with an estimated value of about $1 million were stolen in a smash-and-grab burglary from a boutique store in South Florida, the store owner said.
The unique luxury bags were taken when the window where they were on display was smashed in the middle of the night earlier this month in the luxury shopping district of Worth Avenue in Palm Beach, according to television station WPTV.
The owner of the handbags shop, Only Authentics, told the television station that some of the bags were valued at more than $100,000 each. Owner Virgil Rogers said the incident happened the night of Dec. 14.
The store has a collection of one-of-a-kind pieces of Hermes and Chanel handbags.
Alex Piquero, a criminologist at the University of Miami, said the thefts were likely the work of organized criminals.
“It just shows you they don’t care, and they have it such that they have this down to the second. I’ve got x amount of seconds to get in there. I have a car waiting for me down on the street, and there’s probably another car two streets from there that it’s going to be loaded on, loaded off, loaded on, loaded off,” Piquero said.
Over the past two months, there have been a series of smash-and-grab burglaries at luxury stores around the U.S.
Thieves rushed into a Southern California Nordstrom store the night before Thanksgiving and ran off with pricey goods. Around the same time, groups of thieves smashed glass cases and window displays and ransacked high-end stores throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, stealing jewelry, sunglasses, suitcases and other merchandise.