The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office has charged five individuals in connection with nearly 200 thefts and robberies targeting online sellers of Apple products between February 2018 and June 2020. Jamari Deon Turner, Jerome Joseph, and Tyler Russell are facing charges for “Hobbs Act robbery,” which holds a potential 20-year sentence in federal prison. Kesai Doss and Ellis Garrett have been charged with wire fraud, also carrying a maximum sentence of 20 years.
The group reportedly used platforms such as Craigslist and Facebook to arrange meetings with sellers. Typically, they’d either steal products during inspections or flee with them, occasionally using accomplices to lock sellers out of buildings. If victims pursued, threats or firearms would deter them.
Primarily active in Inglewood, Paramount, Long Beach, and downtown Los Angeles, all five were identified using shared phone numbers, emails, and online accounts. Doss and Garrett are cited as the “most prolific thieves,” with victims often recognizing Doss as the assailant. Their connection to the crimes was through the phones they operated and the accounts they used to resell stolen items.
Turner, Joseph, and Russell are also linked to multiple incidents, including a June 2020 robbery where they allegedly brandished a firearm at a victim’s residence.
Doss and Garrett are currently detained, while the other three were apprehended on Tuesday. The FBI, Inglewood Police Department, and Los Angeles Police Department are investigating the case.