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iPhone bandits target Hayes Valley

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People chatting on their iPhones have been targeted in a recent string of Hayes Valley robberies occurring in broad daylight.

Police are still looking for a teenager who they believe was involved in four separate incidents Saturday — three of which occurred within five minutes of each other.

The crime spree started around 11:30 a.m. and every victim was using an iPhone, Officer Boaz Mariles said.

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In the first incident, the victim felt someone walking too closely behind him in the 500 block of Grove Street, turned around and saw a teenager put on a black ski mask, Mariles said. The victim ran and nothing was stolen.

Within minutes, a male was walking out of a store at Gough and Ivy streets while talking on his iPhone when three teenagers approached him — one who brandished a gun — and they took his phone, Mariles said.

Shortly after, another person was robbed of their iPhone just blocks away at Buchanan and Ivy streets by a teenager who simulated a gun, he said.

“They try to grab it while you’re using it so it’s not locked and they can see all your information,” Mariles said.

Around 9:10 p.m. a fourth person using an iPhone was approached by at least a couple of teenagers, one of which also brandished a gun, he said.

No one has been injured or arrested.

kkelkar@sfexaminer.com

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