The vast, high-end flea market known as Stuff was the latest victim of a smash-and-grab robbery on Wednesday morning, with a group of four to six thieves breaking through the glass front door using a slingshot and going about stealing probably thousands of dollars of jewelry and collectibles.
As ABC 7 reports, via one of the store's owners, the thieves may have used nearby homeless people to act as lookouts as they committed the caper, which occurred at 4:30 a.m. Wednesday.
And this is just another in a string of smash-and-grab type robberies that have occurred across the city in the first few months of this year, several of which involved cars smashing through the front windows of businesses.
Stuff is less a single store than it is a marketplace that rents "stalls" to some 60 antique and flea market dealers specializing in mid-century furniture, cookware, objets, and designer collectibles. Markups are often high, but dealers specializing in antique jewelry and such tend to know what they've got, and one dealer told CBS 5 that he lost about $5,000 worth of stuff noting that the thieves weren't very "professional" and left behind some valuable sterling silver.
In February and March several audio equipment stores in different neighborhoods were burgled in a similar fashion, and the SFPD suggests the crime wave could be linked to the same group of criminals, though that is unclear. But yes, smash-and-grab continues to be the trending crime of 2015.