OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Before the crack of dawn on a busy Black Friday morning as scores of metro area shoppers prepared to snatch up all kinds of Christmas deals and presents, Overland Park police also warned those fast-moving shoppers to be wary of criminals on the prowl.
“Man, that’s just kind of scary and odd. This is a place where you bring your family, ” said Logan Meireis, who talked to FOX 4’S Robert Townsend just before she and two friends headed inside Oak Park Mall area stores Friday.
Overland Park police released surveillance photos of two young suspects now wanted in connection with a carjacking.
Investigators says around 3:30 on this busy Black Friday morning the pair approached a person outside a JCPenney at Oak Park Mall and victimized them.
On Saturday, police announced that two juveniles were taken into custody without incident for the armed robbery. They remained in custody pending charges by the Johnson County Prosecutor.
Police won’t say if the victim is a man or a woman, a shopper or a mall employee. They do tell FOX 4 when officers arrived at the crime scene near 95th and Quivira Road the victim had already handed over their car keys when one of the suspects pointed a gun in their direction.
The victim wasn’t hurt.
Cops say the two carjackers, one wearing a gray sweatshirt with “CALI” on the front, and, the other in a black hoodie, sped off in the victim’s gray, 2008 Toyota Corolla.
“I just try to wear my purse around my waist when I’m out shopping this time of the year. It makes it harder for anyone to grab anything from it, ” said Logan Meireis.
“I just try to travel in groups and always watch to see what’s around me,” said Brittany Ulrichs, who was also caught in throngs of holiday shoppers.
Meantime, a spokesperson for Oak Park Mall wouldn’t comment on the car theft. She did say they have around-the-clock security officers on patrol: on foot inside the mall and outside riding in vehicles. They’re also told extra security officers will be on duty during the busy holiday shopping season.
“It is a bit crazy since you expect just to be out here shopping and not running into anyone trying to rob you or shoot you,” said shopper, Haena Lee.