trader joe's, armed robber, robberies, encino, long beach

ENCINO (CBSLA) — Police are looking for armed robbers targeting Trader Joe’s locations across Southern California.

Police say a brazen robbery occurred at the chain’s Encino location at White Oak Ave. and Burbank Blvd. around 8:30 p.m. Sunday. The L.A. Times reports as many as four suspects went into the store, one watching the door while the others demanded cash from the manager.

Trader Joe’s wouldn’t comment on the robbery but sent CBS2/KCAL9 a statement reading in part: “We trust our customers and do not conduct surveillance on them. When necessary, we take appropriate action, including having security cameras and security guards in our stores, to help ensure the safety of our customers and crew members.”

It’s one of several robberies at Trader Joe’s throughout Southern California in recent months.

Long Beach police say the Trader Joe’s on Bellflower Blvd. was hit twice in two weeks. In those incidents, a lone suspect went into the store pulled a gun on a store employee and demanded cash. Police say they have security video of those robberies but they’re not releasing the footage to the public.

The robberies in Long Beach and Encino happened in the evening. Police aren’t saying if they are related.

CBS2/KCAL9’s Elsa Ramon reported Monday evening from the Encino location, where extra security guards were clearly visible.

“It’s like we’re living in different times,” one patron said.

Anyone with information is urged to call authorities.

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