Cries of “Stop this man!” could be heard up and down Cottesloe’s bustling Napoleon Street on Saturday – culminating in the arrival of police officers.
“It all happened so quickly, I’m still shaking,” Lulu and I shopkeeper Theresa Schaefer told The Starfish.
Shortly after 3.30pm “I noticed a man in our store bundling merchandise into his pockets.
“I told him to ‘Put that back,’ and he did. But then I noticed his pockets were still bulging. He denied having taken anything. It was very awkward.”
After the man left the store, “I found out that shops on either side of me had been through something similar. Laptops, jewellery, you name it.
“People were really upset, up and down the length of Napoleon Street.”
Shopkeepers and customers gave chase, the police were called, and by the time your Starfish correspondent arrived on the scene, a man was being interviewed by officers in the Station Street carpark, along with several eyewitnesses.
“This was a real case of community citizens coming together to protect each other,” said Theresa, as several customers approached her to give her a hug.
Police are continuing their investigations.
“The man apparently had an answer for everything, explaining away his behaviour. That’s the law for you.. it’s still unclear what happens now, ” a Cottesloe shopper told The Starfish.