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D.C. mayor wants end to flash mob thefts

WASHINGTON, Aug. 20 (UPI) -- The mayor of Washington, D.C., has denounced flash mob shoplifting after two instances of the mass thievery at convenience stores.

The two stores were taken for mostly snack food, The Washington Post reported Friday.

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On Aug. 12 a 7-Eleven was robbed by about 25 people of about $450 worth of products. On Thursday, a Ship Express in Northeast Washington was hit by about 10 women who made off with $70 worth of candy, snacks and drinks, police say.

"We have shoplifters nearly ­every day, but they take one item," The Shop Express manager, Muhammad Butt, said Friday. "Not this grabbing by a group."

"Both morality and the law are quite clear: It is wrong to steal from others," District Mayor Vincent C. Gray said in a press release Friday, pledging to "pursue criminal charges against those involved."

Meanwhile, police detectives have identified 16 of the 25 involved in the 7-Eleven case, most of whom are juveniles.

Prosecutors say they will be discussing charging the young thieves with disorderly conduct, theft and, if any of them threatened store employees, robbery.

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