PORTLAND -- City leaders are teaming up with law enforcement and prosecutors to crackdown on a rash of flash mob robberies in recent months.
In April, cameras caught a large group stealing from the Gill Mart Chevron off Southeast 92nd and Foster Road. Teens rushed in, overwhelmed the one worker and then took off with their loot.
After public concern, several agencies met to get a new game plan together. These incidents are typically considered low-level crimes and the people involved aren't prosecuted if they're first time offenders.
The new policy changes that.
Police will send youth offenders to the detention center, and make sure they are held accountable.
"We were worried if we didnt develop a concerted, well organized protocol where were all on the same page in our response that it would lead to more of these events happening," said Christina McMahan Assistant Director of Juvenile Services with Multnomah County.
A similar flash mob robbed a convenience store in East Burnside and the Nordstrom inside Lloyd Center Mall in April.
McMahan says she noticed a deterrent in these crimes since the new protocol started five weeks ago.
KGW Reporter Jaqueline Sit contributed to this report