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Mob of Nearly 100 Looters Ransacks Gas Station, Store Owner Says Police Took Hours to Respond — 'Back to Square One'

Photo of looters ransacking a gas station in Oakland
Source: KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco/YouTube

Jul. 6 2024, Published 2:00 p.m. ET

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A mob of around 80 to 100 looters descended upon a gas station convenience store near the Oakland International Airport, leaving a trail of destruction in their wake.

The incident took place around 4:30 a.m. following a car sideshow.

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mob  looters ransacks gas station store owner police hours respond
Source: KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco/YouTube

Nearly 100 people grabbed everything they could get their hands on.

The store, owned by Sam Mardaie, fell victim to the violent looters who smashed their way into the establishment, causing chaos and havoc.

Mardaie described the scene, telling KTVU, "Shelves were ripped apart, all the grocery items were torn or stepped on or vandalized."

The looters stole goods from the fridges, shelves, and even below the counter, amassing approximately $25,000 in cash from the registers and ATM.

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mob  looters ransacks gas station store owner police hours respond
Source: KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco/YouTube

Owner Sam Mardaie estimated approximately 80 to 100 people broke through his store’s front door.

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Two employees inside the store were threatened during the mass pillaging, which lasted around 40 minutes.

Despite the distress call made to the Oakland police, the response time left much to be desired. Mardaie expressed his disappointment, claiming that it took authorities a staggering nine hours to arrive at the scene.

“This is the hardest thing you could ever go through…especially if you’ve been put in sweat and tears day in and day out,” the frustrated owner told the outlet.

Initially deemed a Priority 2 case due to the absence of suspects, the incident was only escalated to Priority 1 after a video of the looting surfaced, prompting police intervention.

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mob  looters ransacks gas station store owner police hours respond
Source: KTVU FOX 2 San Francisco/YouTube

Dozens of looters ransacked an Oakland gas station convenience store and caused thousands of dollars in damage.

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“It’s crazy. I mean, it’s a daily thing. It hasn’t been a day since we opened in August that we don’t have an incident,” Mardaie told the outlet at the time.

“I come from Yemen, a third-world country, and we don’t have those incidents in a third-world country where there’s no law and order.”

The rampant crime plaguing the area has instilled fear in the community, with customers expressing concerns about their safety.

Ebony Bolton, a store patron, expressed her apprehension surrounding the incident, telling the outlet, "It's very disheartening, I'm scared to go out after dark and I don't know it's just alarming." The prevalence of crime has forced prominent businesses like In-N-Out to shutter their doors in the vicinity, citing safety concerns.

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The looting spree's repercussions are palpable, with Mardaie and his family grappling with the aftermath of the ordeal.

Having assumed ownership just ten months prior, the setback has been particularly devastating for the Mardaie family.

Reflecting on the incident, the shop owner lamented, "Building yourself for the last ten months, and then you're back to square one."

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