Saks customer says smash and grab suspects were ‘laughing’ and ‘smiling’

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FRONTENAC, MO (KTVI) – A witness to the recent high-end purse robbery at Saks Fifth Avenue said she had been shopping in the store for only a few minutes when chaos erupted.

“All of the sudden. We heard ‘boom, boom.’ Glass breaking. And I was like, ‘Oh my g-d, it’s someone shooting!'” she said.

The witness, who asked that her identity be withheld, sent pictures to Fox 2 News of the moments following the brazen smash and grab November 26. The photos showed shattered glass and empty cases.

The customer said the group barreled past her and other customers.

“They were laughing, and they were smiling and they had their arms full of purses. And they were just running out the door,” she said.

Police believe a dozen suspects are responsible for the theft of nearly $60,000 worth of designer handbags. Eight of them were apprehended and later charged after they allegedly led authorities on a pursuit that spanned from Frontenac to Litchfield, Illinois.

The witness said she was grateful no one was injured.

“It the end of the day, it’s just merchandise. But there are people who are left behind when they do things like that; that have to live with the aftermath.”

Authorities in other states have reported similar brazen crime sprees. Police in Beachwood, Ohio believe the same group might be responsible for a smash and grab incident at the Saks store in 2015.