Recently the NYPD put out a warning to residents and tourists that cell phone thefts were on the rise for friendly people who were willing to help out strangers wanting to make a call or stealing it out of their hands as they ride the subway (the video above is from Hungary but you get the idea).
Well people, ‘Minnesota Nice’ isn’t alive and well here locally and you should probably be paying closer attention to your mobile phones when you’re on mass transit or at McDonald’s in Apple Valley.
On November 7, 2012, Apple Valley police were dispatched to a robbery complaint at McDonald’s located in Apple Valley, Dakota County, Minnesota. Upon arrival officers spoke to R.M. who stated that he was studying at the McDonald’s when a male, later identified as Devon Deshawn Gordon, approached him and asked R.M. if he could use R.M.’s phone. R.M. reluctantly agreed but told Gordon that he needed to stay by where R.M. was seated. Gordon then took the phone and began walking towards the southwest door of the business, looked and R.M. and said “thanks for the phone” and then ran east towards County Road 42.
Gordon went to put the phone in his pocket and R.M. swatted his hand away. Gordon then punched R.M. and attempted to hit R.M. four or five more times but R.M. was able to block those punches. R.M. grabbed Gordon Around his shoulders and forced him down into the mulch in front of KFC. R.M. was able to get his phone back from Gordon and then ran back into the McDonald’s to call 911.
Gordon said that he had been at the McDonald’s and asked to use R.M.’s phone. R.M. let him use the phone and that he went outside. Gordon said that R.M. thought he was trying to steal his phone so R.M. assaulted Gordon.
Have you recently allowed a stranger to use your mobile phone to make a call? Do you pay attention when in public or riding mass transit, especially the LRT, to those who are around you who may attempt to steal your phone? What sorts of protection do you have on your phone to help you either remotely wipe, otherwise lock, or locate your phone? If someone stole your phone would you chase them down and confront them as ‘R.M.’ did here? Whatever you have to say about this one go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.