Police Track Alleged iPhone Thief With GPS, Discover Him Wearing Victim’s Clothing

An alleged smartphone thief in San Francisco’s Bayview District was caught using the phone’s GPS tracking technology early this morning and was found wearing the victim’s clothes, police said.

Rico Ivory Walls, 21, was arrested in connection with the robbery reported shortly after midnight near Hudson Avenue and Mendell Street, police spokesman Officer Albie Esparza said.

The 25-year-old victim in the case told police that he was walking home when two suspects approached and one pulled out a handgun.

The suspects ordered the man to hand over his property and reached into his pockets to remove his wallet and iPhone. A suspect also ripped a backpack off the victim’s shoulder that contained a T-shirt and a pair of shorts, police said.

After the suspects then fled north on Mendell Street, police responded and discovered the phone had a GPS tracking system and tracked the phone to the 1400 block of McKinnon Avenue, where an officer detained the only suspect walking along the street, police said.

The suspect, later identified as Walls, was wearing the clothing that was in the victim’s backpack and the smartphone was found in his possession, according to police.

A record check revealed Walls was on active probation and subject to searches, and a search of his home nearby led to the discovery of the victim’s backpack as well as a large amount of crack cocaine, police said.

Walls was booked into custody on suspicion of two counts of possession of stolen property, narcotics charges and possession of burglary tools, as well as a probation violation, according to Esparza.

Dan McMenamin, Bay City News

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