Authorities in Fort Lauderdale, Florida are warning men frequenting upscale nightclubs to watch out for a group of women they believe to be responsible for an uptick in robberies throughout the year.
According to the Orlando Sentinel, six men reported being drugged and robbed in April 2013, a marked increase after three reported cases in March 2013 and three more for January and February 2013 combined. The women are believed to be responsible for stealing more than $300,000 in cash and property.
Authorities released a composite sketch on May 3 of a woman allegedly identifying herself as “Crystal,” who is sought for allegedly stealing $6,000 in cash and four watches worth more than $100,000 from a 45-year-old man after going home with him on March 2.
Broward County Sheriff’s officials said other women committing similar crimes have identified themselves as “Heaven,” “Lisa,” “Liza,” “Unkisha,” “Michelle” and “Christina” to their victims.
“They are busy,” Detective Ronald Cusumano told the Sentinel. “Once in awhile we get cases like this, but recently there’s definitely been a spike in them.”
Cusumano also said the department is more worried about the risks involved in victims’ accounts of being drugged before having their possessions taken. In each case, the men reported leaving a drink unattended or accepting one made by the suspects.
“We’ve got victims who are getting knocked unconscious,” Cusumano said to the newspaper. “It’s a potentially dangerous situation.”
One victim, 34-year-old Steven Kesto, told the Sentinel he was robbed after going home with two women he met outside a club on February 20, 2013. The last thing he remembered was sitting on his bed with them after drinking vodka and cranberry juice at their urging. He woke up to discover his $27,000 watch had been stolen, along with an iPad and the glasses they were using. Security video from his condominium complex showed the women leaving before he woke up.
“They were very evil,” Kesto said to the Sentinel. “Stealing from people is one thing, but drugging people, you could die from it.”
Watch the Sentinel’s short video on the case, posted Sunday, below.