OAKLAND, Calif. - BART Police say surveillance video was critical in the first arrest following a flash mob style robbery on a coliseum BART Train.
Saturday night 40 to 60 teenagers jumped the turnstiles, hopped on a train and grabbed phones and bags, in some cases even beating up passengers.
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"We got some really clear, quality images," said Acting Deputy Chief Terence McCarty.
Images police aren't sharing because most of the suspects are juveniles. "We've issued today multiple arrest warrants," McCarty continued.
Crime on BART is up, mostly robberies. "I fear for my safety so that's why I carry my backpack this way now," said BART passenger Lea Nelson who was carrying her backpack in front of her.
The Acting Deputy Chief says staffing is also up. Officers are working 5 day shifts instead of 4 day shifts.
Since March, BART Police say they have arrested 19 people connected to group robberies.
Officers were not at the Coliseum BART station Saturday night when the incident occurred because they were responding to an attempted suicide at another BART station.
"Hopefully it doesn't happen too much in the future," said BART passenger Andrew Lacenere.
If it does, BART Police say there will be more arrests. "You will be identified," said McCarty.
In the meantime, they're reminding distracted passengers this is a crime of opportunity. "I was just listening to music and sending a couple of texts," said Hannah Oxley who then put her phone and earbuds in her bag.
BART Police also say they are creating a multi-agency task force to address the issue.
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