Atlanta Police believe the so-called "blue jean bandits" have moved on to another crime. Sgt. Archie Ezell tells WSB after years of getting away with high-end designer jeans in snatch-and-grabs, and the forming of the "blue jean bandit" task force in 2008, the thieves are now looking for an easier way to get cash.
"The criminal street gangs in the past that used to the blue jean thefts, we're seeing some of those same gangs, that have kind of altered their names a little bit and they got a few newer members, are also some of the same groups that are doing these ATM thefts," said Ezell.
Ezell says the ATM thefts though, have proven to be hit-or-miss.
"I think that they think one, there is a lot of money in them. A lot of times they find out that that is just not the case. And I think also they think that if they're just doing a routine burglary, they think that the punishment for that is not gonna be severe," said Ezell.
Ezell says that could not be further from the truth.
"In actuality, when you do a smash-and-grab burglary of that type, the sentencing and the things of that nature as far as punishment, is greatly magnified. There are actually charged with smash-and-grab instead of just routine burglary," said Ezell.
Ezell thinks the latest crimes, ATM thefts, six in the last month, are an act of desperation.
"I really can't say what they'll do next when or if they get bored. Like I said, the criminal street gangs, they engage in a variety of criminal activities and this is just one of the things they're doing now," said Ezell.