An officer walks past a broken window at the Nordstrom at the Grove Shopping Center in Los Angeles following a Nov. 22 robbery. Photo credit: OnScene.TV

Authorities Sunday identified four men who were being held in the “flash mob” robbery of at least $400 of merchandise from a Lakewood Home Depot, but more suspects are still at large.

Meanwhile, the Los Angeles Police Department lifted a citywide tactical alert early Saturday that had been in effect due to a spate of such robberies throughout the city and surrounding communities.

The Home Depot arrests were made following a traffic stop in Beverly Hills, 34 miles to the northwest, at approximately 2:20 a.m. Saturday, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

Beverly Hills police had spotted a red vehicle in the 400 block of North Rexford Drive with front-end damage matching the description of the vehicle used in the Friday evening robbery.

According to the the sheriff’s department, the car contained four males, all dressed in dark clothing, with “new tools in the vehicle, possibly from Home Depot.”

Detectives took the suspects into custody and brought them to the sheriff’s Lakewood station, where they were booked on suspicion of conspiracy to commit burglary.

The suspects were identified as Everett Lestorkindle, 22, of Hawthorne, and Los Angeles residents Bronz Jackson, 20, Shawn Jones, 19 and Daniel DeHughes, 19.

Lestorkindle, Jackson and Jones were being held in lieu of $20,000 bail and are due Tuesday in court Tuesday. DeHughes was being medically treated prior to being booked.

“There are still several more suspects, and suspect vehicles, being sought in this flash mob burglary and many more like it,” the sheriff’s department statement said.

Home Depot employees told Fox11 a group of up to 20 males between 15 and 20 years old pulled up to the store in as many as 10 cars, put on ski masks and began stealing sledgehammers and crowbars.

“We tried to stop them,” worker Luis Romo told the station. “We closed the front entrance and they put their sledgehammers up and whoever got in the way, they were going to hurt them.”

The group threatened one customer, “but he got away,” Romo said.

The crime was another in a series of so-called “flash mob” or smash-and-grab robberies across the County, with several on Black Friday.

A large group of thieves entered the Bottega Veneta store at 8445 Melrose Place, near the border with West Hollywood, and stole an unknown amount of items before fleeing.

According to KCAL9, a total of six smash-and-grab robberies took place Friday in the Fairfax District, Beverly Grove and Hancock Park.

As of Sunday afternoon, the LAPD had not confirmed how many robberies took place across the city on Black Friday.

On Wednesday, robbers attacked a security guard and stole designer handbags worth an estimated $25,000 from the Nordstrom store at the Westfield Topanga mall in Canoga Park. That same day, “flash mob” suspects entered several stores at the Beverly Center, grabbed merchandise without paying and ran out, according to the LAPD.

Those crimes occurred two days after a smash-and-grab robbery by a mob of at least 20 people at the Nordstrom store at the Grove shopping center in the Fairfax district. The suspects in that robbery fled the scene in at least four vehicles.

Police arrested three suspects in South Los Angeles following a chase. Officers recovered several items of clothing, at least one cash register and gloves from their vehicle.

Also Monday, at about 9:45 p.m., six suspects entered a CVS Pharmacy on South Vermont Avenue in South Los Angeles and stole three cash registers, taking about $8,500 in cash, police said.

Last Sunday, storefront windows of the Louis Vuitton and Saks Fifth Avenue stores in Beverly Hills were smashed during attempted burglaries.

– City News Service

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