A group of thieves conducted a high-end heist on the Upper East Side of Manhattan early Wednesday morning, leaving the shelves of a luxury store bare as they made off with $80,000 in merchandise, police said.
The burglars smashed their way through the front door of the Givenchy store on Madison Avenue around 5 a.m., according to police, emptying the store before taking off with the loot. The suspects got away with 39 handbags and two pieces of women's clothing, though a neighbor said it appeared the robbers dropped something on their way out.
"This morning when they left, they left a pocketbook that they probably dropped. I saw it on the street," said the woman.
Detectives remained at the scene hours after the heist, collecting evidence and searching for clues. NBC New York learned that detectives are trying to determine if the heist has any connection to other similar burglaries targeting luxury stores on Madison Avenue. The Alexander McQueen and Balenciaga stores just down the street from Givenchy were hit earlier in the year.
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"That's a heist, something you see in a movie. If they are successful, I will imagine they could do it again," said neighbor Ray Rabbitt. "Something like that is obviously not a random act, it was planned ... organized to say the least."
Less than eight hours after the break-in, the ritzy retailer was open once again for business, as employees and store management cleaned up and re-stocked their shelves and displays.
Police said that the burglars sped away from the scene in two cars, with one heading east on 64th Street and the other going north on Madison Avenue.