Store detective attacked by thief

February 20, 2009 9:04:32 PM PST
Police are hoping that a video will help them find the culprits behind a brutal beating at a shopping mall.Macy's store detectives focused the lenses of their hidden surveillance cameras on these two young men when they appeared to act suspiciously while shopping.

The violent encounter happened Tuesday at the Springfield Mall in Springfield, Delaware County.

The two are thought to be in their late teens or early 20's.

One of the suspects eyed a particular jacket. The video shows that the suspect apparently puts the jacket back on the shelf, but another disappears from the rack and the two disappear behind a pillar.

Police say they slipped the jacket into a bag and left the store. When approached outside by a store detective, one fled. The other, wearing a tan hooded Hollister jacket, was caught and being handcuffed when he allegedly resisted and attacked the store detective, punching and shoving him.

The skirmish is seen just outside the doors.

"It was a vicious attack that resulted in facial injuries to the store detective and that combined with the theft we're treating it as a robbery," John DiTrilio of Springfield Police said.

Police suspect these young men can be recognized by people who know them. They believe catching them might help turn them around before they go too far down a crime ridden path.

"This guy has already shown a propensity to violence and if he doesn't get caught and shown that's not behavior that's acceptable in society, it's going to get worse and the next person might be more seriously hurt than this store detective was," DiTrilio said.

Anyone recognizing the suspects can go to Springfield Township Website or call police at 610-544-5506 to leave a tip.

Penalty for retail theft can be probation, while felony robbery can result in jail time.

CLICK HERE to follow Action News on Twitter

CLICK HERE to get Action News on your website

CLICK HERE to find Action News on Facebook

Click here to get the latest Philadelphia news and headlines from across the Delaware and Lehigh valleys.