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Customers’ cell phones stolen at Around The Corner bar in Lakewood

LAKEWOOD, Ohio-    Around The Corner is normally a barrel of laughs, but in recent weeks, some patrons have walked out of the popular Lakewood bar feeling violated, thanks to a pick-pocket who has pilfered a large number of smartphones from customers.

Lakewood Police Captain Edward Hassing told FOX 8 News, "Cases where people have been bumped and they looked for a cell phone and then all of the sudden their cell phone is gone, situations where people leave their phones unattended and come back a few minutes later and find their cell phone gone."

In a number of cases, women reported their cell phones were taken from their purses, while they were waiting in line for the restroom at Around The Corner.

One of the theft victims told FOX 8, "Honestly, it can happen to anybody. It just makes me more angry that people are that rude and disrespectful to take other people's property without thinking twice about it."

The victim says unbeknownst to her at the time, the pick-pocket stuck his hand into her purse and pulled her $1,000 iPhone from an inside pocket. When she reported the theft to Lakewood police, she was stunned to learn that five other Around The Corner customers had their iPhones stolen the same night. "They know what they're looking for and they're sneaky and I mean to have 15 phones taken in a night, they know what they're doing, so I would just say be on the lookout at all times and always know where your stuff is."

Ryan Krivosh, the owner of Around The Corner, issued a statement that reads, “This has also been happening at bars in downtown Cleveland. Every week, we spend thousands of dollars on security. We are aware of the situation and have been working with Lakewood Police to identify the suspect or suspects. We are also adding security to make sure everyone is safe and their iPhones are protected."