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A 20-year-old man has been charged with robbery after he snatched a cellphone from an unsuspecting BART rider at 12th Street/Oakland City Center Station Tuesday, according to BART police. Trevel Thomas was arrested at the Powell Street BART station in San Francisco by BART police after he stole a cell phone from a rider shortly before 1:40 p.m., according to BART police. The incident was caught on three surveillance cameras inside the BART station.
BART police released the videos of the cellphone snatching to remind riders to be aware of their surroundings. The December 11th video shows Thomas grabbing the cellphone from the victim before running up the escalator and jumping the fare gates to escape. Thomas confessed to the crime and was booked at the Glen Dyer Jail in Oakland.
The Alameda County District Attorney’s Office charged Thomas with robbery, according to BART police. Era Jenkins, a spokeswoman for BART police said that smartphone thefts are on the rise nationwide. Jenkins said passengers are encouraged to hold their belongings close to their bodies and make eye contact with those nearby.
The videos of the incident can be seen below.